Anticipating Questions at the 341 Meeting

The idea of going to court can bring trepidation to even the calmest individuals. This is especially true in bankruptcy situations, where financial issues are in play for those who might not be accustomed to the legal arena. At the same time, however, most Chapter 7 bankruptcies only involve one court-like proceeding, and that is the 341 meeting.

We've covered the 341 meeting at length in previous entries, so by now you should know that for the most part, there is nothing to be worried about. You've discussed any potential issues with your case with your attorney, and besides that, your attorney will be there with you at the meeting. It is important to remember throughout the process that the trustee's goal in examining you at such a meeting is to determine if there are any assets in your case that can be liquidated for potential distribution to your unsecured creditors.

As such, here are some potential questions that could be asked by your trustee at the 341 meeting. These are questions that are common, or involve normal 341 procedure in some way. First, you'll be asked to state your name for the record and present photo identification and your social security card. The trustee will present you with the declaration from your petition and ask if that is your signature on the page. The trustee will then ask you if you remember reviewing the bankruptcy petition with your attorney, if you were provided a copy of the petition, and if you reviewed the bankruptcy information sheet as well.

After that, the trustee will likely inquire as to any real estate you might have. They'll ask the value of any such property and what your intentions are with that. They'll also ask you about any vehicles, bank accounts, financial accounts, or potential tax refund you might have or expect to receive, and determine if it is unexempt or worth liquidating. The trustee could ask you if your financial circumstances have changed or if you have the right to sue anyone for any money. The trustee could also ask you questions about paying any of your debts, and when you paid them.

Of course, there are other questions that could be asked and the trustee might not even ask many of the above. It is important to understand the process and be prepared to answer those questions, so consulting with your attorney prior to the 341 date is crucial to the success of your case.