Feb 11 2014
Most people in the modern world live with some sort of debt looming over them. Those that have the means and the determination can use that debt to their advantage while those that struggle regularly with making ends meet can get buried by their debt.
The most difficult part of having debt involves getting too far behind and being unable to catch up. For some people, bankruptcy really is the only option for getting out from under their financial burdens. However, there is another option: consumer proposal. Whether you are looking for debt help in Toronto or in Calgary, you should consider this alternative. Here are a few reasons why.
1. Your Credit Will not Be Damaged as Much
One of the big drawbacks to using bankruptcy law to end your debts is the significant damage it does to your credit score. Bankruptcy can follow you for up to seven years, and makes it difficult to for you to get loans, rent houses, and obtain credit cards.
A consumer proposal is a settlement offer that is proposed by you and your bankruptcy trustee to your creditors. It can be a lump sum payoff amount or an agreement to reduce your monthly payments.
A consumer proposal will also damage your credit score. After all, you are changing the terms of your original agreement, and paying less than you had said you would. Still, paying some or most of your debt off looks a lot better than asking your loan company to forgive it all.
2. You Can Keep Your Case out of the Courts
Most lawyers will tell you that it is advantageous to keep your case out of court. Court decisions can be unpredictable. They are also fairly permanent. With most bankruptcy cases, you will have to present your filings before a judge or jury, and you will be at their mercy in a lot of ways.
Instead of taking things to court, you can make proposals to your creditors, and settle things without having to present anything to a judge or jury. In this way, you keep a lot of the bargaining power, and you can ensure that you agree with the terms before the agreement is finalized.
3. Proposals Have More Options than Bankruptcy
Consumer proposals have far fewer restrictions than bankruptcy. This is largely due to the fact that the proposal is essentially a settlement offer agreed upon by both the creditor and the borrower. Proposals never even have to go court, and the settlement meetings can often take place over the phone. However, the terms are different for each unique situation, and are subject to the whims of each party involved.
4. Consumer Proposals are More Acceptable for Creditors
Most creditors want all of their money back plus the interest that was originally agreed upon. If it becomes clear that they are not going to get that much from you, they usually become more willing to negotiate. They almost all prefer getting paid some money instead of getting nothing after a bankruptcy filing.
An article at nomoredebts.org says that if your creditors do not agree on the terms of your proposal, you will be left with few alternatives other than bankruptcy. Also, there is still a lot of paperwork involved, and there are many things you need to know to navigate this successfully.
For these reasons, it is paramount that you find an experienced bankruptcy trustee to help you with your debt. They can tell you which options you have, navigate the bankruptcy system, and negotiate on your behalf. If you are buried under a seemingly insurmountable amount of debt, call a bankruptcy firm today.
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Edson Senna is a business student. He enjoys applying what he has learned by writing about investing, finance, entrepreneurship, and other business-related topics. He relies on Harris & Partners for his financial information.