Ontario Bankruptcy and Consumer Proposal Statistics

Ontarians continue to carry record levels of personal debt and for many residents, a consumer proposal or a personal bankruptcy becomes the only way out of financial trouble.

We update this page for monthly data trends as they are released by the Office of the Superintendent of Ontario.

2021 Consumer Insolvency Filings

Consumer insolvencies ticked upward in March, with year-over-year declines at the lowest level since the beginning of the pandemic. Total consumer filings declined only 17.8% in Ontario and 15.7% across Canada. Total insolvencies were also at their highest volume since the pandemic began.

The month-over-month increase from February to March was quite sharp.  March insolvencies were 21.9% higher than February in Ontario, while Canadian insolvencies increased 22.8% month-over-month.

The economy was partially opened up in March 2021 and courts were opened.  However, since that time many provinces have re-instated lockdowns in response to a strong third wave. In Ontario, the court was also closed again for a short period. We expect this will result in a dip in insolvencies in April and May, however this does provide some indication of the rise we will see once the economy fully reopens. 

Consumer proposals as a percentage of total consumer insolvencies remained strong at 75.5% in March 2021 for Ontario and 68.7% Canada-wide.

Our Homeowners Bankruptcy Index, remains low at 3.5% in April 2021.

Ontario Consumer Insolvency Statistics by Region 2020

COVID-19 had an unusual impact on consumer insolvencies in 2020.  Ontario insolvencies ended the year down 24.2% and Canadian consumer insolvencies declined 29.7%. 

In total, 33,992 Ontarians across Ontario filed insolvency in 2020. Personal bankruptcies fell 36.8% and consumer proposals declined 18.2%. Proposals as a share of Ontario insolvencies increased to 73% in 2020, from 66% in 2019.

To understand how the profile of the average consumer insolvency changed in 2020 read our annual Joe Debtor Bankruptcy Study as well as our report on how COVID-19 affected household debt.

Below is a summary of insolvencies by geographic region as summarized by Hoyes Michalos based on insolvency statistics by FSA provided by the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy (OSB). Regional FSA allocations may differ slightly from annual economic region data provided by the OSB as the regional data summarized by Hoyes Michalos provides additional location details than is available by economic region.

REGION*

Consumer Insolvencies Total Growth Growth Bankruptcy Growth Proposal % Proposals
Canada 96,458 -29.7% -40% -23.2% 66%
Ontario 33,992 -24.2% -37% -18.2% 73%
           

REGION*

         
Barrie Region 1,520 -24% -33% -21% 72%
Belleville Region 525 -41% -46% -38% 71%
Brampton 1,659 -23% -41% -18% 81%
Brantford Region 611 -19% -35% -12% 75%
Brockville Region 280 -45% -58% -33% 63%
Cambridge 405 -28% -44% -20% 75%
Chatham Region 299 -34% -51% -22% 70%
City of Toronto 2,181 -16% -36% -8% 78%
Cornwall Region 403 -28% -40% -18% 61%
Essex-Leamington Region 161 -43% -56% -34% 71%
Etobicoke 1,066 -15% -30% -8% 74%
Guelph 313 -29% -50% -15% 72%
Hamilton Region 1,503 -22% -33% -17% 72%
Huron Region 345 -19% -44% 7% 65%
Kingston Region 487 -24% -33% -19% 66%
KW-Wellington Region 1,049 -20% -37% -11% 72%
London Region 1,651 -28% -37% -23% 70%
Markham 540 -24% -28% -23% 79%
Mississauga 1,694 -19% -23% -17% 73%
Newmarket & Area 671 -22% -44% -11% 77%
Niagara Region 1,049 -28% -37% -23% 67%
North Bay Region 412 -31% -48% -22% 75%
North York 2,462 -18% -31% -14% 79%
Burlington-Oakville Region 922 -26% -35% -22% 75%
Orangeville & Area 255 -28% -45% -21% 78%
Oshawa-Bowmanville Region 1,179 -31% -42% -26% 76%
Ottawa Region 2,458 -28% -35% -23% 67%
Parry Sound-Huntsville Region 241 -43% -46% -41% 71%
Pembroke Region 245 -30% -52% -13% 72%
Peterborough Region 517 -33% -38% -30% 72%
Pickering 544 -24% -29% -22% 77%
Richmond Hill 432 -15% -27% -10% 77%
Sarnia Region 269 -30% -40% -22% 64%
Sault Ste. Marie Region 357 -22% -39% 3% 52%
Scarborough 1,826 -21% -34% -16% 79%
Stratford Region 104 -34% -40% -31% 69%
Sudbury Region 898 -27% -38% -21% 69%
Thunder Bay Region 466 -19% -28% -7% 50%
Timmins Region 499 -18% -41% -8% 77%
Vaughan 380 -10% -28% -3% 77%
Windsor Region 797 -26% -38% -18% 69%
Woodstock Region 290 -19% -35% -11% 71%
*Region includes surrounding rural areas

Who files insolvency in Ontario?

The average insolvent debtor looks much like the average person in Ontario. They are working and struggling to make ends meet. To read more about what the average bankrupt looks like, see our bankruptcy research study: Joe Debtor.

Press Inquiries

For commentary and information about consumer insolvencies and debt issues in Ontario, contact:

J. Douglas Hoyes
CA, CPA, Licensed Insolvency Trustee
Email Doug

Ted Michalos
CA, CPA, Licensed Insolvency Trustee
Email Ted