Everyone probably agrees that being audited is a real-life nightmare because you are being questioned and feel like you are being accused of something. An audit does not need to be as scary as you can imagine and most audits are conducted via mail. Audits can also be about someone making a mistake and you end up getting back more money. In sum, do not worry until you know all the information. However, often, audits are about owing money but again that amount does not need to be scary.
It may be helpful to hire a financial advisor to reduce stress and get all the information you need unless the amount you owe is less than the amount you would pay for help. First, organize, label and folder all forms and receipts and show up on the correct day at the correct time. Second, treat the auditor with respect and only discuss the parts of the audit and state your case, once. Do not argue. If you feel the need, you can take your argument above the auditor at a later time. Finally, do as much research as you can about your case in order to feel calm and confident.
What are my responsibilities after I file for bankruptcy?
You have filed for bankruptcy and your creditors have stopped calling. However, you are still responsible to make sure you complete several requirements:
1. You need to be honest and accurate with your trustee regarding your finances. You need to list all assets such as property or a vehicle and you need to list all liabilities (what you owe and who you owe it to). This step also includes disclosing information regarding property you have owned in the past few years-property you have sold or transferred.
2. You need to give all credit cards to your trustee.
3. You need to attend 2 financial counselling sessions and the first meeting of creditors (if you are required to attend). The 2 counselling sessions provide you with information about bankruptcy, managing your finances in the future and budgeting and trying to improve your financial situation in the future.
4. Advise the trustee of an address change
5. There is a chance you may be asked to attend a meeting at the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy. If this is required, you will be asked questions about your bankruptcy such as your conduct and the causes of your bankruptcy.
There are several different bankruptcy discharge scenarios and it depends on a few factors:
1. If this is your first bankruptcy and you are not paying surplus income (income you would be using to make payments if you earn over a certain amount each month) then you will be automatically discharged 9 nine months after filing for bankruptcy.
2. If this is your first bankruptcy and you are paying surplus income, your automatic discharge will be 21 months after you filed for bankruptcy.
However, you must attend 2 financial counselling sessions and make sure you are always truthful and disclose all information to your trustee because the trustee and/or the Office of the Superintendent of the Bankruptcy office has the right to oppose the discharge if any discrepancies occur.
3. If you do not qualify for an automatic discharge, you need to contact your trustee and they will set up a date for a discharge hearing. This hearing involves the court deciding whether or not you will be discharged. They consider initial reasons you filed for bankruptcy, if you have attended the financial counselling sessions and your financial conduct and affairs during your bankruptcy.
If you are already insolvent, that is you are unable to pay your debts, you should not incur further credit because if you become bankrupt it is considered to be an offence under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, and you may be prosecuted. If you incur debt before you declare bankruptcy, you need to be honest and disclose all information. Dishonest behaviour is fraud and you have a duty to inform your trustee of any change in your financial situation.