Whether you file a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will be required to attend at least one court date, and this is your Section 341(a) Meeting of Creditors. Here is some information about what happens at this meeting so you can feel more prepared before you go to court.
How did it get the name “Section 341(a) Meeting of Creditors”?
Section 341(a) is the number of the bankruptcy code that says this meeting will happen: 11 U.S. Code § 341 “(a)Within a reasonable time after the order for relief in a case under this title, the United States trustee shall convene and preside at a meeting of creditors.”
Will my Creditors be at the meeting?
Most likely not. Creditors have the right to come and ask you questions at this meeting, but most often they don’t. Creditors usually only come when they suspect someone has committed fraud by applying for a debt or filing for bankruptcy.
Who is at the meeting?
You, your attorney, the trustee appointed by the Court to oversee your case, and the other attorneys and debtors that have their meeting during the same time slot.
What happens at the meeting?
A number of people who filed bankruptcy around the same time as you are all scheduled to have their meeting at the same time. The Trustee will call your cases one at a time and ask each of you a series of questions. Some of the questions are required, other questions are suggested based on your situation or to clarify questions that the Trustee might have. A sheet with questions like the Trustee will as you is here.
When will the meeting happen?
Generally the meeting is about 30 days after your bankruptcy was filed. The bankruptcy court will mail you a document titled “Order and Notice of Bankruptcy.” This document is proof that your bankruptcy was filed, and on it is your 341(a) date, time and location.
Where will the meeting happen?
The location of your meeting will be on the Order and Notice of Bankruptcy form you receive. Check this document so you can prepare. Since 2020 many courts have held telephonic or video meetings. If your meeting is telephonic, your Order and Notice of Bankruptcy document will have a telephone number that you are required to call into. If you have questions about how to attend your meeting be sure to ask your attorney.
What should I do to prepare for the meeting?
Before your meeting you will be provided a 341 Meeting Information Sheet, which you can find here. You should read that document and ask your attorney if you have any questions about it. You should also provide your attorney with any information or documents they have requested asap.
I hope this provides you with some information to help you feel prepared for your Section 341(a) Meeting of Creditors.