What is a 341Bankruptcy Meeting?
If you have reached the stage at which you are preparing for your 341 meeting, it means that you extremely close to receiving your bankruptcy discharge. A 341 bankruptcy meeting is also known as the meeting of creditors. The meeting will be conducted by a Trustee. A Trustee is an attorney appointed by the Court to administer your bankruptcy filing. During your 341 bankruptcy meeting, the Trustee may ask you questions pertaining to any information on your bankruptcy filing, and has the authority to challenge any irregularities that may appear on your bankruptcy petition.
All of your creditors listed on your bankruptcy petition may also attend the 341 bankruptcy meeting. In the majority of cases creditors do not attend. The questions asked by the Trustee come from a list provided by the US Trustees’ office. If a creditor does attend, they may also ask questions. A creditor may inquire about statements you made during a loan application. If answers to any such questions differ from what appears on your bankruptcy petition, it may be troublesome. Bankruptcy filers are often anxious about being cross examined during the 341 meeting. An experienced attorney will be able to anticipate additional inquiries that a particular trustee might have based on your circumstances and will advise you so that you have the information the Trustee may request. It is important that all the information you provide to the your attorney and the trustee is accurate.
In the vast majority of cases, 341 meetings run smoothly. However, in some cases, problems may arise, particularly if you did the following:
- Transferred large sums of money or valuable assets to a family member two years prior to filing bankruptcy.
- Paid a large sum of money to only one creditor before filing bankruptcy.
Bankruptcy laws strictly prohibit such actions, and the family member or creditor may be asked to give up any money or assets that they have received.
About three months following your 341 meeting, if there are no discrepancies, the Court will issue your discharge letter. Your creditors have up to sixty days to challenge the discharge of their debt. If there are no objections, you will receive your bankruptcy discharge letter between three to five months after filing your petition.
Although 341 meetings typically last between 10-15 minutes, it is advised to allocate at least an hour of your time. Several meetings are scheduled in an hour and the Trustees do not always follow the order that may be listed.