You’ve finally made the decision to stop the bleeding and get your financial life back on track by filing for bankruptcy. Before you can proceed and have your debts discharged through Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 protection, you must meet with a person assigned to you by the courts. This person, known as a bankruptcy trustee, will hold a meeting of your creditors to determine the viability of your bankruptcy filing.
Under oath, he or she will ask you a number of questions about your finances to ensure that you are not abusing the bankruptcy system or lying about anything on your petition. Most of the time, this meeting goes by very quickly without any hiccups, unless your bankruptcy petition does not line up with your supporting documents (pay stubs and tax returns). Any discrepancy will cause your trustee to investigate more thoroughly. Be sure to be honest on your petition and review your paperwork before the hearing.
Although your creditors will be invited to the meeting, oftentimes they do not show – allowing the trustee to handle the matter. Your trustee will not only ask verification questions, but he or she will look for things which may impact your bankruptcy and any information that will increase the amount of money you can pay your unsecured creditors. Since this is about your finances, most questions will involve your debts, assets and income.
Examples of Trustee Questions:
- Did you disclose all of your assets?
- Is this your first time filing for bankruptcy?
- Have circumstances changed since your filing?
- Are you up to date on your taxes?
- Did you include all of your creditors?
- Have you ever refinanced your house? When was the last time?
- How did you calculate the value of your assets?
- Do you have any child support or alimony payments?
- Why are you filing?
- Did you provide an accurate income on the means test?
- Are all of your monthly expenses necessary and reasonable?
- Do you have any dependants? How many?
Contact the Law Office of Joel R. Spivack today to discuss your finances and bankruptcy options. He has been helping New Jersey and Pennsylvania residents get back on track financially for over 30 years.