Several days prior to your scheduled 341(a) Meeting, take the time to review your filed Petition and Schedules. If you filed a Chapter 13, also review your filed Chapter 13 Plan. The trustee will not be asking "trick" questions. The questions will focus on your pre-petition financial condition, your assets and your liabilities. If your 341(a) Meeting relates to a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your trustee will also be determining, based upon the financial documents you have provided, whether your Chapter 13 payment plan is feasible. Your attorney will have (should have) provided the trustee with all of the required and/or requested documentation to review in advance of the 341(a) Meeting. Often, these documents include your most recent paystub(s) and tax return(s). Be certain you have provided your attorney with proof of insurance for any properties requiring insurance (home, auto, etc.). Know the cash value of any life insurance policies. Get some sleep!
Know Where You Are Going!
If you are not familiar with the location of the 341(a) Meeting and the distance is not prohibitive, take a drive and become familiar where the closest parking lots and/or parking meters are located. You need to know how to enter the building and whether or not cell phones, etc. are allowed in the building. Arriving late to your 341(a) Meeting will only add to your stress level. The night before, you must get some sleep!
Your Attorney Cannot Always Give You An Exact Starting Nor Ending Time For Your 341(a) Meeting!
Your 341(a) Meeting will probably not be the only 341(a) Meeting your trustee has scheduled that date and time. Generally, the 341(a) Meetings are heard in the order in which they are called (if all parties are present) or the trustee may chose to call the 341(a) Meetings in reverse order. In other words, it is the trustee's prerogative as to how the cases are called. Your attorney cannot always tell you whether you need to call out from work for the entire day, a morning, or just the afternoon. You should make arrangements at work or for child care so that you are not nervous if you are waiting for an hour or more for your opportunity to allow the trustee to examine you. Remember to bring your identification which will be explained to you by your counsel and have that identification on your person (not left in the glove box of your vehicle). Without the proper identification, most trustees will not conduct the 341(a) Meeting and you may be required to come back at a later date.