15 Oct My Bankruptcy 341 Meeting of Creditors Is Coming Up — What Should I Expect?
You’ve filed bankruptcy and now your § 341 Creditors Meeting is coming up. What should you expect? Understandably, many people are apprehensive about their “court” appearance. Usually, in most consumer oriented bankruptcy cases, the § 341 Meeting of Creditors is not an ordeal.
First, the § 341 Creditors Meeting is required and it is required that you attend this Meeting of Creditors (“MOC”). The MOC allows the trustee who was appointed to your case to ask you questions, under oath and under penalty of perjury, concerning all of your property and your financial situation. Do not tell the trustee a whopper–he or she will not be amused when it comes to light (and it will!).
Additionally, your creditors are notified of the date and time of your MOC. This way, the creditors can also appear and ask you questions concerning your property and financial affairs.
It all sounds rather daunting!
In most consumer oriented bankruptcy cases, the trustee can size your case up pretty quickly and he or she will ask you a list of fairly typical questions.
Typically, the trustee will ask whether you reviewed the petition and whether it accurately lists all of your assets and all of your debts. The trustee may ask about how you valued the property that you listed on your petition. If you filed a chapter 13 case, the trustee will probably repeat the plan provisions in very general terms to make sure that he or she understands what your plan proposes and to make sure that you understand what your plan is proposing. In my district, typical creditors’ meetings rarely last more than 5 minutes.
Additionally, debtors are often concerned that their creditors will be at the § 341 Creditors’ Meeting. In my experience, it is rare that the large, institutional creditors such as credit card companies or automobile lenders appear at the Meeting of Creditors. If a creditor appears, it is usually a small business creditor who received the Notice of Bankruptcy and believes they must appear in “court” and has rarely dealt with bankruptcy cases. Of course, the large, institutional creditors have substantial experience with bankruptcy and fully understand that they do not need to appear and rarely do so.
Finally, what happens at a § 341 Creditors’ Meeting varies in the various districts across the country. In order to be prepared for your Creditors’ Meeting, be sure to talk with your lawyer about what to expect in your district.
Generally, the Meeting of Creditors is not the ordeal that most people expect. It is something that must be done but with foreknowledge, you will sail through it.
Watch a short video of a 341 bankruptcy hearing called a meeting of creditors.
Who will be at my bankruptcy hearing?
What if I can’t speak English at my bankruptcy hearing?
What happens after my bankruptcy hearing?
Adrian Lapas, Esq.
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