When filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, borrowers must attend a 341 Meeting of Creditors hearing to affirm their identity and answer questions about their financial situation. Typically, this hearing occurs approximately 20 to 40 days after the bankruptcy filing date.
This hearing is called the “Meeting of Creditors” because your creditors are invited to attend and learn more about your financial situation (as stated in your bankruptcy petition). Although the bankruptcy trustee conducts this hearing and will ask most of the questions, any attending creditors can do so as well.
That said, it’s not uncommon for a bankruptcy filer’s creditors to skip this meeting. Even if they do, though, they can still object to a discharge of the borrower’s debt at a later hearing.
Do I Have to Go to the 341 Meeting of Creditors?
Yes. All borrowers must attend the 341 meeting of creditors when filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Even if you’ve hired a bankruptcy lawyer to handle your case for you, your appearance in court is mandatory for this hearing. After the 341 hearing, though, you may not have to appear in court again.
How Long Does a 341 Meeting of Creditors Hearing Last?
You might be surprised to learn that 341 hearings for individual bankruptcy filers can last 10-15 minutes. Because other bankruptcy filers will have their 341 hearings scheduled during the same hour as yours, however, you may have to wait longer – especially if the court is running behind schedule for the day.
Which Questions Will the Bankruptcy Trustee Ask at the 341 Meeting of Creditors?
The purpose of the 341 meeting of creditors is to verify your identity and the information you included in your bankruptcy petition. Because the 341 hearing isn’t supposed to last too long, most of the questions posed are simple “yes” or “no” questions.
A few of these questions may be as follows:
- Have you ever filed for bankruptcy before?
- Was the information contained in your petition accurate when you signed it?
- Has any of the information in your petition changed since you signed it?
- Do you owe child support or spousal support?
- Do you own or have an interest in real estate?
- Are you currently involved in a lawsuit?
- Do you expect to receive an inheritance or insurance payout?
- Does anyone else owe you money?
- Have you may any payments of $600 or more within the past year?
- Have you transferred any property within the last two years?
As long as your petition is accurate, answering these questions shouldn’t be difficult. Nonetheless, our experienced bankruptcy lawyer at Nguyen Law Group can help you prepare for your 341 Meeting of Creditors Hearing so you can have a better idea of what to expect.
Who Else Is at the 341 Hearing?
In addition to you and your attorney, the bankruptcy trustee and (possibly) your creditors are present. It’s likely there won’t be a judge because the bankruptcy trustee conducts the 341 Meeting of Creditors hearing.
We Can Guide You Through Bankruptcy
When you’re considering bankruptcy, it can be overwhelming to look at the big picture. That’s why you should connect with a bankruptcy lawyer who can help you through this process step by step so you can feel more comfortable.
A 341 hearing is just one of the steps you’ll need to get through when filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but rest assured that Nguyen Law Group can be there when you need us most. If you think filing for bankruptcy is right for you, we offer a free consultation to help you learn more about us and how we can help.
Get started now by contacting us today.