THE 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS.
All debtors are required to attend a 341 Meeting of Creditors and answer questions under oath. The Meeting takes place approximately 30-40 days after filing and is conducted by the assigned Bankruptcy Trustee. Creditors can also appear and ask questions, but they rarely attend the Meeting.
WHAT HAPPENS AT THE 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS?The Bankruptcy Trustee will begin by introducing themselves and explaining why you are there. After the short introduction, the Bankruptcy Trustee will call each case on the calendar, one at a time. When your case is called by the Bankruptcy Trustee, you will hand the Trustee your identification including (1) your driver's license (or other government issued photo identification), and (2) your social security card (or other proof of your social security number such as an original W-2 form or 1099 form). After verifying your identification, the Bankruptcy Trustee will place you under oath and begin to ask you questions. The Meeting of Creditors will usually last only about five (5) minutes. After the Bankruptcy Trustee finishes questioning you, the Bankruptcy Trustee will allow creditors to ask questions. While it is rare for a creditor to ask questions at a Meeting of Creditors, it is possible and you need to be prepared to answer questions.
HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR THE 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS?In order to prepare for the 341 Meeting of Creditors, the Bankruptcy Trustee will reach out to you before the 341 Meeting of Creditors and have you compete a short questionnaire and provide the Bankruptcy Trustee with certain documents. The questionnaire is very simple and will ask you for your name, address, telephone number, email address, and other simple to answer questions. The documents requested will include things like copies of tax returns, the first paycheck received by you after you filed your bankruptcy case, bank statements (including a bank statement that includes the date your bankruptcy case was filed). If you do not provide the requested documents and the completed questionnaire to the Bankruptcy Trustee timely (usually about ten days prior to your 341 Meeting of Creditors), or if you fail to provide your identification to the Bankruptcy Trustee, the Bankruptcy Trustee may continue your 341 Meeting of Creditors to another date/time or possibly dismiss your case.
THE BANKRUPTCY INFORMATION SHEET.The Bankruptcy Trustee will provide you with a document called the Bankruptcy Information Sheet. The Bankruptcy Information Sheet provides a brief explanation of each type of bankruptcy case under which individuals may file (Chapters 7, 11, 12 and 13). The Bankruptcy Trustee may ask you if you received, reviewed and understood the Bankruptcy Information Sheet. A copy of the Bankruptcy Information Sheet may be found (in English) online at https://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/ust/legacy/2011/10/06/bky-info_english.pdf. A link to the Bankruptcy Information Sheet in other languages may be found online at https://www.justice.gov/ust/bankruptcy-information-sheet-0.
WHAT QUESTIONS WILL BE ASKED AT THE 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS?There are ten (10) general questions that will be asked by your Bankruptcy Trustee in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case (the questions are similar in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy case). This information is taken from the Handbook for Chapter 7 Panel Trustees – Supplementary Materials, Effective October 1, 2012.
(1) Please provide your picture ID and social security number card.
(2) State your name for the record. Is the address on the petition your current address?
(3) Did you sign the petition, schedules, statements, and related documents and is the signature your own? Did you read the petition, schedules, statements, and related documents before you signed them?
(4) Are you personally familiar with the information contained in the petition, schedules, statements and related documents? To the best of your knowledge, is the information contained in the petition, schedules, statements, and related documents true and correct? Are there any errors or omissions to bring to my attention at this time?
(5) Are all of your assets identified on the schedules? Have you listed all of your creditors on the schedules?
(6) Have you previously filed bankruptcy? (If so, the trustee must obtain the case number and the discharge information to determine the debtor(s) discharge eligibility.)
(7) What is the address of your current employer?
(8) Is the copy of the tax return you provided a true copy of the most recent tax return you filed?
(9) Do you have a domestic support obligation? To whom? Please provide to me the claimant’s address and telephone number, but do not state it on the record.
(10) Have you read the Bankruptcy Information Sheet provided by the United States Trustee?
Additional questions may be asked depending upon the Bankruptcy Trustee's review of your petition, schedules, statements, and related documents.
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU ARE NOT ENGLISH PROFICIENT?The Office of the United States Trustee may provide an interpreter for non-English speaking Debtors, however, in some circumstances, it may be necessary to bring an interpreter with you. You should speak with your attorney prior to the 341 Meeting of Creditors or, if you are not represented by an attorney, you should contact your Bankruptcy Trustee before the 341 Meeting of Creditors.
WHAT IF YOU CAN'T MAKE IT TO YOUR 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS?You may be able to change the date or time or even location of your 341 Meeting of Creditors with the permission of the Bankruptcy Trustee. If the Bankruptcy Trustee grants the continuance, you must immediately file a notice of the new date, time, and location, and serve that notice on all creditors and parties in interest on the master mailing list, and file a certificate of service with the Court.
CAN YOUR APPEARANCE AT THE 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS BE WAIVED?You may be able to waive your appearance at the 341 Meeting of Creditors. A motion to waive your appearance must be filed with the Court and state with particularity the reasons for the waiver and include a statement that your Bankruptcy Trustee has been contacted and their position as to the waiver. The motion to waive your appearance must be served on the Bankruptcy Trustee, United States Trustee, and any party that filed a notice of appearance. In addition to the motion, you must provide the Bankruptcy Trustee a copy of your identification documents along with a notarized affidavit attesting to the authenticity of the copied documents and the identity of the debtor. The Bankruptcy Trustee and United States Trustee will have seven (7) days to respond to the motion. In the event you have moved out of the jurisdiction and cannot attend the 341 Meeting of Creditors, a waiver may not be granted in those cases where you can appear at the local office of the United States Trustee.
WHERE IS THE 341 MEETING OF CREDITORS HELD?The exact address of your 341 Meeting of Creditors will be stated on the Notice of Bankruptcy Case mailed to you by the Bankruptcy Noticing Center. Following are the various addresses for 341 Meeting of Creditors in the State of Arizona:
PHOENIX at the Office of the United States Trustee, 230 N. First Ave., Ste. 102, Phoenix, Arizona.
TUCSON at the James A. Walsh Courthouse, 38 S. Scott Ave., Ste. 140, Tucson, AZ.
FLORENCE at the Pinal County Superior Court, 971 Jason Lopez Cir., Bldg. A, 3rd Floor Hearing Rooms
PRESCOTT at Prescott City Hall, City Council Chambers, 201 S. Cortez, Prescott, AZ.
FLAGSTAFF at the AWD Building, US Magistrate Courtroom, 123 N. San Francisco St., Flagstaff, AZ.
BULLHEAD CITY at the Mohave County Superior Court, 2225 Trane Rd., Bullhead City, AZ.
YUMA at the Yuma Civic Center, 1440 Desert Hills Dr., Yuma, AZ.