Questions Your Will Be Asked At Your Northern
District of Georgia Chapter 13 341 Hearing
If you file a Chapter 13, you will be required to attend a meeting of creditors that will be scheduled approximately 30 to 40 days after you file. This meeting of creditors hearing is commonly called a “341” hearing because Section 341 of the Bankruptcy Code requires all Chapter 13 debtors to participate in a brief examination conducted by your Chapter 13 trustee.
Although 341 hearings are court proceedings, they are much more informal than other court hearing in which you may have participated. The biggest difference you will notice - there is no judge. Your 341 hearing will be presided over by your Chapter 13 trustee. The trustee is not a judge and he or she has no power to make any final decisions or rulings in your case.
The Chapter 13 trustee can file written objections to your case and can oppose the confirmation of your case in a hearing in front of the judge. Usually, however, the trustee’s goal is to identify any problems with your case and to work with your Clark & Washington lawyer to fix those problems.
In Atlanta, there are three (3) “standing” Chapter 13 trustees. Each trustee employs one or more staff attorneys who also attend and preside at 341 hearings. Each of the trustees has his/her own set of questions, but here are the type of questions that you may be asked:
- State your full name and mailing address
- Did you meet with an attorney to discuss your financial situation prior to filing?
- How long did you spend with the attorney?
- Did you meet with anyone else in his office?
- Did your attorney explain how the fees work in your Chapter 13 case and has your attorney provided you with a copy of the Rights and Responsibilities Statement Between Chapter 13 Debtors and Their Attorneys?
- Do you have any credit cards (you must hand them in to the Trustee)?
- Do you belong to a credit union?
- Is any money coming out of your pay for any purpose other than taxes or insurance?
- Do you contribute to a retirement savings plan or 401(k).
- Is money coming out of your paycheck to fund the plan?
- Do you own any real estate? If so, how much is it worth?
- Have you made any payments to the Trustee (note that even if your case is set up to be paid by employer deduction, you are responsible for making all payments until the payroll deduction kicks in).
- Have you filed tax returns for the past three years?
- Do you expect a refund this year?
- How much will the refund be?
- Have you ever filed Bankruptcy before?
- Have you made all mortgage payments that have come due since you filed your case?
- Do you have insurance on your vehicle?
- Do you have a personal injury claim or any other claim for money damages pending at this time?
- Do you owe any child support? Are your child support payments current?
Occasionally one of the Atlanta trustees will print out a copy of some of these questions and ask you and your lawyer to review and sign ahead of time. Click on the link to read a copy of the 341 question printout.