06 Mar Should I Be Scared of the Meeting of Creditors?
In the overwhelming majority of cases, the Meeting of Creditors (also called the “341 Meeting,” because it is authorized by Section 341 of the Bankruptcy Code) is about 5 minutes long, no creditors appear, and the Meeting consists of Trustee going through a series of standard questions. Why, then, do most of my clients hear the words “Meeting of Creditors” and get a mental image of being seated in a straight-backed chair in a large, darkened room, with a spotlight in their face, and their creditors in hooded robes chanting around them?
The answer, I think, lies solely in the name. “Meeting of Creditors” suggests that creditors have something to do with the meeting. However, unless you are involved in a business bankruptcy or a domestic dispute, the odds are that creditors have nothing to ask you at the Meeting, and don’t want to pay someone to attend. In a Chapter 13 case, they get paid through the Chapter 13 Plan, and in a Chapter 7 case, there rarely is any basis for objecting to your discharge, so they don’t appear.
If the Meeting were named the “Trustee’s Meeting,” a more accurate description of what normally occurs, people wouldn’t be quite so afraid of what might happen.
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