Appearing at 341 creditors meeting fully prepared will significantly help with the bankruptcy petition. It will also make the process faster for the bankruptcy court to process the petition and grant debt relief. Working alongside your bankruptcy attorney will help you become more confident and prepare you with the legal documents, and even prepare you for the possible questions that might get asked during the meeting.
Preparing legal documents.
It is crucial to prepare yourself before the creditor meeting. Things or information indicated on your petition must be read and reviewed carefully. If the possible inaccuracy is entered on the petition, it is best to file for an amendment before the 341 meetings. If the latter is not likely due to lack of time, the debtor should be prepared to raise the problem to the bankruptcy trustee’s attention during the meeting.
You should carefully prepare the bankruptcy petition and bring an approved identification photo, Social Security Number, and any documents that prove any economic changes before filing bankruptcy.
Bringing a set of bankruptcy paperwork for personal reference would be ideal too. Sometimes the bankruptcy trustee will notify the debtor to bring other documents or items to the meeting. If you are unsure of the said items or documents, consulting with a bankruptcy attorney is crucial.
Verifying debtor’s identity.
To ensure that the real identity of the debtor is the one who attended the meeting, a debtor must present an original government-issued I.D. such as Social Security Number. The section 341 meeting provides an opportunity for the presiding officer to verify this information. One common issue is failing to list the name exactly as it appears on the license, passport, or government-issued I.D. If these forms, along with the Social Security card number, did not match at the beginning of the meeting, the debtor must file for an amendment and likely have to be called back a second time.
Typical Questions Asked
Typical questions asked during the 341 meetings include:
- Did you review the bankruptcy petition before filing it to the court?
- Is all of the information indicated in your bankruptcy papers true and accurate to the best of your knowledge?
- Are all of your assets disclosed?
- Did you list all of your creditors?
- Did you list all of your debts?
- Do you have any previous history of bankruptcy applications before?
- Has anything changed since the day you filed for bankruptcy?
- Are you under any obligations for any domestic support such as alimony or child support?
- Did you file all the tax returns as they have come due?
- Does anyone owe you money for any reason?
There are also times where the bankruptcy trustee has discretionary questions that pertain to the debtor. These questions are usually framed and intended to determine whether you are telling the truth or have any nonexempt assets that the trustee could claim. They might ask these few questions during the meeting:
- How much is the value of your home?
- How much is the value of your car?
- Do you have more than one car or vehicle?
- Are you expecting an inheritance?
- Did you have a previous history of transferring your assets to anyone?