With the coronavirus pandemic leaving many in a precarious and dire financial situation, Lou Brzezinski and other lawyers and insolvency trustees have been sitting by the office phone, expecting it to ring.
“And it’s not ringing. And we ask ourselves what’s going on?”
When it comes to consumer bankruptcies, business is actually down — fewer people are filing now than they did before the pandemic began, said Brzezinski, a partner in the Toronto-based legal firm Blaney McMurtry and specializes in business reorganization, insolvency, liquidation and bankruptcy.
Indeed, Douglas Hoyes, a licensed insolvency trustee and co-founder of Toronto-based Hoyes, Michalos & Associates, predicts that when the figures come in for April, personal bankruptcies will likely be down about 50 per cent from last year.
Income for many has dropped, debt is likely increasing. “Obviously, there’s going to be a massive spike in bankruptcies: that would be the conventional wisdom,” Hoyes said.