She didn’t want to “get away with it” – a picture of success that hid huge debts led her to bankruptcy

Young Quebecers are increasingly represented in insolvency proceedings in Quebec. Our Research Office and the show me he met several young people who went bankrupt before they turned 25.

TOTAL DEBT: $14,668

  • FIRST NAME : Stéphanie (fictitious name)
  • AGE : 23 years old
  • CITY : Rawdon
  • BANKRUPTCY : October 2020
  • CAUSE : poor financial planning


In her twenties, Stephanie gave the impression to her friends that she was very successful with her lovingly decorated apartment and brand new Chevrolet Spark. Unfortunately, this image of prosperity and independence depended heavily on credit and concealed great financial fragility.

When Stéphanie separated, she had to start paying the rent herself. She also realized that buying a new car came with a lot of costs that she hadn’t imagined. The unpaid bills quickly piled up.

“It was a lot of mobile phone bills (which I didn’t pay at first). I told myself it didn’t matter,” she explains.

And credit cards. When you’re young, it’s easy to accumulate it. That’s the option: I’ve got money there that I can take, it’s pretty easy.”

At the same time, Stéphanie also had a car accident. But she was only insured “on one side”, and that was because she wanted to pay less for her monthly payments.

“I crashed my car and it’s not covered. I have higher amounts to pay, I’m already late on the bills. (…) I was able to handle it before. But there (I was) with (thousands of dollars in debt) , at the age of 20, I couldn’t (consider it)”, he confides.

“I felt suffocated. I couldn’t see the end,” he continues.

At age 20, the young Rawdon resident filed for bankruptcy with debts totaling more than $14,000.

Ironically, she herself worked for a financial institution that provides credit.


In the interview, the young woman did not hide that it had not been easy to confess everything to those around her.

He revealed to his mother that he was not rolling in gold, although at first he did not want “it to be known, to come out”. He ended up living with the latter again to cut costs.

Although entering into a process of restoring his finances brought him immense relief, the bankruptcy he experienced does not solve everything, he judges. He had to pay an amount every month to his creditors for three years.

“The fact is that bankruptcy follows you. All is not well because the debts are settled,” he says. She talks about the shame that still haunts her for not having managed her affairs well.

Today, Stéphanie tries to take control of herself. Even though you’re told that having a credit card can help improve your credit score, you’re still hesitant to get one again. He is afraid of falling back into the same debt spiral.

She works at a daycare and says she can’t afford to go back to school.

The young woman calls for more financial education in secondary school.

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