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Wage garnishment is a stressful situation for any employee. It’s an effective legal procedure to recover an unpaid debt. Are there ways to protect oneself against such actions? The Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act offers solutions to stop or protect against garnishments.

What is a wage garnishment?

It’s important to understand what wage garnishment is. When a creditor wants to get paid, they can, with the authorization of a court, order the debtor’s employer to hand over a portion of the salary. This amount is then sent directly to the creditor until the debt is fully repaid. Revenu Québec often uses garnishment for unpaid taxes. Revenue Canada also has wage garnishment in its arsenal of available means.

Protection provided by the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act

The Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act offers two main solutions for those facing a wage garnishment or being threatened with one: the consumer proposal and bankruptcy.

  • Consumer proposal: This is an agreement between the debtor and their creditors where the debtor commits to repay a portion of their debts over a given period (up to 5 years) and that without interest! Once the proposal is filed, all wage garnishments and/or legal proceedings are immediately suspended. 
  • Bankruptcy: By declaring bankruptcy, this suspends wage garnishments and erases most debts. However, this option has impacts on credit and should be approached with caution.

Consult a LIT (formerly bankruptcy trustee)

If you find yourself dealing with a garnishment or a threat of garnishment, it’s time to consult a Licensed Insolvency Trustee. By evaluating your financial situation, they will provide you with wise advice to allow you to protect yourself and regain control of your situation.

For a future after debts, consult a trustee by visiting or by calling (800)567-1905. First consultation in person or virtual without obligations.”

Stephan V. Moyneur

CIRP, Licensed Insolvency Trustee

Official Office: St-Jérôme
Phone: 450-990-1277

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