What Is A Bankruptcy Trustee’s Role?
When your Bankruptcy Attorney files your bankruptcy case, your case will be assigned to a local bankruptcy trustee. Generally there are several chapter 7 trustees in Washington while there is only 1 or 2 chapter 13 trustees per district. A bankruptcy trustee’s role is to manage your bankruptcy estate and act in the best interest of your creditors. If you have any non exempt assets, the trustee may seize the assets and make distributions to your creditors. Trustees are paid per case but they also receive a percentage off the top of any assets seized and sold. Generally most people who file for bankruptcy get to keep all of their assets as there are bankruptcy rules called exemptions that allow debtors to keep a certain amount of goods, however the amount you can exempt varies by state. In Washington State we can use Federal exemptions or we can use state exemptions. Most people in Washington opt to use the Federal exemptions as they are very generous, unless they are trying to keep a home with equity. In which case, the Washington state exemptions can be used, and $125,000 may be exempted towards a home.
In addition to a local trustee whose job it is to review and liquidate your assets if possible, a Federal trustee is also assigned to review your case to make sure you are within the guidelines and qualify to file for bankruptcy. If you for instance make too much money and do not pass the means test in a chapter 7 case, a trustee on the Federal level may intervene and force you to dismiss your case or convert to a chapter 13 bankruptcy.
You will most likely only wee your trustee one time which is at your court date called the 341 meeting of creditors where they will ask you some very basic questions.
If you have additional questions regarding dealing with your bankruptcy trustee, give Symmes Law Group a call today at 206-682-7975