If you are considering preparing a bankruptcy petition with the assistance of a bankruptcy attorney or on your own, in about 30 days after your bankruptcy case is filed you will be required to attend a bankruptcy court date and be questioned by a bankruptcy trustee. The trustees job is to uncover any property that is over available exemption limits and sell any property for the benefit of your creditors if at all possible. Most cases are no asset case, meaning the trustee does not sell any of your possessions. The meeting with the bankruptcy trustee is called the 341 meeting of creditors and if you have hired an attorney, they will attend the meeting with you.
Your meeting will be scheduled at the same time as several other debtors and each debtor will be called up to meet with the bankruptcy trustee one at a time. The trustee will swear you in and you will be under oath to tell the truth. The meetings usually only last about 5 minutes or less but the time you are actually in court may depend on how many people go before your, whether prior cases need translators, and how many assets the individuals going before you have which requires more analysis by the bankruptcy trustee. In most cases, creditors do not show up to the meeting, despite being called the meeting of creditors. The reason behind this is that most creditors know that there is nothing that they can say or do which will change the circumstances of them getting any value out of your no asset case. The individuals who do show up to meetings of creditors may be those who don’t know any better, such as an ex-spouse, old business partner, or a landlord. If they do show up, they have a chance to be heard on the record (all meetings are recorded), and bring up any issues that they have at that time. In most cases, showing up to the meeting will be a moot point and the debtors are going to receive a discharge of their debts regardless of whether anybody shows up for the meeting.
If you have additional questions regarding your 341 meeting of creditors meeting please contact Symmes Law Group at 206-682-7975