Why You Should Not Stress Over Your Meeting of Creditors Hearing


Why You Should Not Stress Over Your Meeting of Creditors Hearing

Quick Overview of the Meeting of Creditors (341 Hearing)

  In order to successfully complete a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing – and discharge your debts – you will need to attend the 341 Hearing, also referred to as the “Meeting of Creditors.” This is a formal requirement, not an option, and so all Chapter 7 filers will be required to attend. The purpose of this meeting is twofold: (1) verification of all the information you’ve submitted to the bankruptcy trustee, including your personal identity, and (2) an opportunity for creditors to ask questions about your bankruptcy case. The Chapter 7 Meeting of Creditors will not be presided over by a judge, but instead your appointed bankruptcy trustee will preside. Your bankruptcy trustee is simply the court-appointed official who’s in charge of overseeing your case. When you show up to your hearing, you will typically not be the only filer in the room. Your bankruptcy trustee will likely schedule to meet with other filers at the same time period. The reason is simply because this meeting almost never lasts very long, usually 5-10 minutes, and so the trustee can process numerous cases simultaneously. You will need to bring copies of your ID and Social Security Card to verify that you are in fact the person filing bankruptcy and that you have a valid social security number. You should also be prepared to take an oath or affirmation that your answers will be truthful. The hardest question for most debtors is when asked the address of their employers; typically, people do not tend to know the address of where they work.

Why You Needn’t Be Stressed or Worried

  The primary reason that you needn’t be stressed about a 341 Meeting of Creditors is simple: creditors rarely show up. So, as long as you’ve got your documentation in order, and everything contained in your filed documents is on par and accurate, you won’t be subjected to an array of pointed questions from frustrated bill collectors. This is the main reason why some people worry about this meeting: they envision a worst case scenario in which they have to respond quickly to a barrage of prying creditors who are angry about the fact that they’re declaring bankruptcy. The truth, however, is that creditors seldom show up, and the reason is because of the cost-benefit analysis involved. In most cases, the only reason a creditor might benefit from attending a 341 hearing is because there is a likelihood of bankruptcy fraud, or inaccurate financial reporting from the debtor. There just simply aren’t enough cases which involve fraud or gross inaccuracy to make attendance worthwhile for creditors. In nearly all cases, if a creditor shows up, the creditor will simply inquire about the debtor’s situation, and the debtor’s responses will be enough to satisfy the inquiries and move the case forward. Rarely will a creditor uncover evidence which can yield benefits.


  As mentioned, the 341 meeting is mandatory, and so there is no way to avoid this hearing. However, as we see, there is no reason why any honest filer needs to be stressed or worried. As long as you bring all the required documents, and answer things truthfully, you likely won’t experience any bumps along the way. The only thing which might be slightly intimidating is the fact that filers will be under oath when they attend the meeting, and the trustee will confirm this through the usual means. Other than that, filers shouldn’t run into problems.

Contact Financial Freedom Advocates for Additional Information

  If you’d like to learn more, please contact Financial Freedom Advocates today by calling 786-668-6688.
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