The “341 meeting” or the “creditors’ meeting” is a statutorily required meeting held within 20-40 days after the debtor files for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. The debtor is strictly required to attend this meeting along with the court appointed bankruptcy trustee and the creditors. This meeting is intended to give the creditors and the trustee an opportunity to ask any questions to the debtor they may have. However, in reality, few creditors attend or ask any questions.
The creditors’ meeting is not designed to harass the debtor but to know his actual financial condition through questionnaires and is a necessary procedure to complete the bankruptcy.
If you are going to file for bankruptcy, you have to attend the 341 meeting of creditors and answer the questions asked by the bankruptcy trustee. Even though if you are a married couple and filing for either Chapter 7 or 13, you have to sit for the meeting of the creditors. Below listed are the most common questions that are usually asked by the bankruptcy trustee. However, it is not necessary that the trustee will ask all the questions. He may ask anything else apart from the listed ones or limit them to only a few after reviewing the documents you submitted prior to the meeting.
Commonly asked questions:
- Did your counsel explain the petition, schedules, and statement of financial affairs prior to you signed them?
- Do you believe that the petition, schedules and statement of financial affairs are complete, true and accurate?
- Did you list all your assets and creditors on the schedules?
- Did you make any payment, or transfer any property that exceeded $1,000 within one year of the filing of the petition?
- Do you owe money to anybody? If yes, is the amount collectible?
- Are you a beneficiary of a life insurance policy or a will?
- Are you a beneficiary who is going to receive income from a trust within the next 6 months?
- Have you scheduled all assets and liabilities pertaining to your non-filing spouse?
- Do you have or had any share in any corporation, partnership, LLP or LLC during the last 5 years?
- Did anyone garnish your wages or property within last 6 months before you file the petition?
- Did you liquidate any sort of investments (retirement, bonds, stocks) in the past year?
- Have you refinanced any of your properties in past two years?
- Are you bound to pay a domestic support obligation (i.e., a separation agreement, divorce judgment, property settlement) as ordered by a government entity?
- How did you evaluate your home or car?
- Has there been any latest change in your income or expense?
- Did your attorney help you understand the differences between Chapter 7 and 13?