Important Dates in Chapter 13 Cases – Part 5

30 Oct Important Dates in Chapter 13 Cases – Part 5

The date set for the confirmation of Chapter 13 plans varies depending on the Court and District where the case is filed.  Bankruptcy Courts differ in the procedural requirements for confirmation of a case.  Some courts hold confirmation hearings in every Chapter 13 case, and many of those Courts require the presence of the Debtor at the confirmation hearing.  In these Courts, even if neither the creditor nor the Chapter 13 Trustee files an objection to confirmation, the Judge can prevent or delay the confirmation. 

In other Courts, such as those in the Northern District of New York, confirmation hearings are usually scheduled approximately 60 days after the proposed Chapter 13 plan is filed with the Court.  If there are no objections to confirmation filed on time, the case is automatically confirmed, without the need for a hearing.  In cases where no objections are filed, the Chapter 13 Trustee simply sends a confirmation order to the Court, the Bankruptcy Judge signs it, and it is filed with the Clerk. 

In cases where an objection to confirmation is filed, a confirmation hearing is held on the scheduled date, but the presence of the Debtor is not required.  The views of the Debtor’s attorney, the objecting parties attorney and the Trustee are heard by the Judge, who either confirms the plan, denies confirmation, or sets an evidentiary hearing on the disputed matter (which could be a valuation issue, a bad faith objection, a disposable income objection, etc.).  Often the confirmation hearing is simply adjourned to allow the parties some time to try to resolve their differences.

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Peter Orville is a bankruptcy lawyer in Binghamton, located in the Southern Tier of New York. He is a member and New York co-chair of the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.
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