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What to expect when going to court for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy

It is natural for people to worry about what to expect when they go to court for their Chapter 7 bankruptcy’s “341 Meeting,” also known as the “Meeting of Creditors.” Concerns about a creditor or the Trustee being angry with you for filing bankruptcy or not paying your debt are understandable, but unwarranted.
 
The purpose of the 341 Meeting is not to shame a debtor for filing but to verify information contained in a bankruptcy petition face-to-face. Other reasons for the 341 Meeting include:

  • An opportunity for a creditor to ask questions of the debtor about the debt or the underlying asset securing the debt;
  • A way to reduce bankruptcy fraud because the Trustee compares the debtor’s photo ID to their actual physical appearance; and
  • Giving the Trustee the opportunity to question the debtor about various matters in the bankruptcy petition, such as their place of employment and social security number.

 

The bankruptcy attorneys at Morgan & Morgan understand how daunting going to court might feel for a client. Some tips for having a successful 341 meeting include:

  • Bring a photo ID, such as a driver’s license or state-issued identification card and a social security card;
  • Be prepared to answer questions like whether you read and understood the information contained in your bankruptcy petition before you signed it.
  • Be assured that Morgan & Morgan will be right by your side during your 341 Meeting, so if there is something you do not understand, you can simply ask for an explanation.

 

The typical 341 Meeting lasts 5 to ten minutes. After the hearing is concluded, your lawyer will be happy to answer questions you have and offer instructions as to what you can expect to happen next.

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