Bankruptcy Exemptions & Consumer Proposals in Alberta

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Bankruptcy exemptions in Alberta

Alberta has the highest rate of consumer debt in Canada, so if you find yourself struggling to pay your debts, then you need to speak to the experts at Harris & Partners. 

Harris & Partners are a specialist Licensed Insolvency Trustee with offices based across Canada, and we can help provide different debt relief solutions to individuals and businesses struggling to manage their debt.

If you’re enduring a difficult financial situation and are considering going through the bankruptcy or consumer proposal process, contact us today for a free consultation with one of our licensed insolvency trustees and we’ll help you to find debt solutions in Alberta and build a stronger financial future.

How does a consumer proposal work in Alberta?

A consumer proposal is a legally binding process where an agreement is made with creditors to negotiate a more manageable form of debt repayment for you.

Your repayment amount will be based on your own unique circumstances and your payments will be spread over a period of five years. This helps to reduce the amount that you owe without the need to surrender your assets to pay your debts.

If you’re based in Alberta and want to file a consumer proposal then you need to work with an insolvency trustee as they legally act on your behalf to set up the agreement and then execute the monthly payments. To book a free appointment with a Harris & Partners trustee, click the link below and let’s get you started on the road to financial stability once more.

Alberta bankruptcy exemptions

In Alberta, some of your assets may be exempt from seizure during bankruptcy proceedings depending on how much equity is in them. Exemptions include:

  • Enough food to last for a period of 12 months.
  • Clothing valued at up to $4,000.
  • Household furnishings and appliances valued at up to $4,000.
  • One motor vehicle valued up to $5,000.
  • Personal property that is used to earn income valued at up to $10,000.
  • All medical and dental aids.
  • Your principal residence if it is less than $40,000. For co-homeowners, this amount can be reduced depending on how much you own of the home.
  • RRSPs, RESPs and pensions.
  • Some life insurance policies.
  • Farmers: Up to 160 acres of land, plus any equipment needed for the next 12 months.

How can I find out more?

If you want to find out more about bankruptcy exemptions and consumer proposals in Alberta, please contact your local Licensed Insolvency Trustee for further information.

Frequently asked questions

When can I file for bankruptcy in Alberta?

You are able to file for bankruptcy in Alberta if you have unsecured debts of at least $1,000 but typically, you should not consider bankruptcy unless your debts are significantly higher than this figure.

Can I keep my home?

You are entitled to keep your home during bankruptcy if the equity isn’t valued at more than $40,000. If you are a co-owner of your home, the exemption amount will be smaller. In the case of owning half of your home, the exemption amount will instead be $20,000.

Can I keep my car?

You are able to keep a vehicle valued up to $5,000 and this also applies to car loans that you are paying off. For instance, you may be able to keep a car worth $10,000 if you have paid $5,000 off it.


How will my pension plans and savings be affected?

There are certain types of savings and life insurance plans that are exempt from bankruptcy in Alberta, such as:

  • RRSPs (Registered Retirement Savings Plans), 
  • RRIFs (Registered Retirement Income Funds),
  • DPSPs (Deferred Profit Sharing Plans)
  • Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSPs)

However, contributions made within the past year can be seized by creditors but any other contributions/transfers are safe.

RESPs (Registered Education Savings Plans) are exempt in Alberta but the money must only be used to fund post-secondary education for a beneficiary.

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