Philosophy and Design of Modern Fresh Start Policies: The Evolution of Canada's Legislative Policy

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Osgoode Hall Law Journal, ISSN: 0030-6185, Vol: 37, Issue: 1, Page: 171-188

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Honsberger, John D.
article description
The fresh start concept-the restoration of a bankrupt to his or her former debt-free status-originated in the United States. While lip service is paid to it in Canada, the author's review of the English origins and subsequent evolution of Canadian bankruptcy legislation indicates that a strong commitment to the fresh start policy has never been the Canadian philosophy. Rehabilitation of the debtor is not a matter of great concern in Canada. Indeed, the Canadian legislative policy has always been restrictive of the rights of debtors. With the passage of amendments to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (BIA) in 1992 and 1997, the Canadian legislation now is increasingly so with the new rules, new conditions, new restrictions, and new penalties placed in the way of debtors' access to a discharge and a fresh start for bankrupts.