Most people filing bankruptcy want to know what the bankruptcy trustee will ask them at their 341 Meeting of Creditors.
While the trustee’s questions will depend somewhat on your specific file, many of the questions are standard. Knowing some of these questions ahead of time can put you at ease. Reviewing these questions will also help your Meeting of Creditors go quickly and smoothly.
Below is a list of trustee questions. Questions 1-15 are commonly asked. The remaining questions are asked less often. Your attorney should also have a good feel for the “pet” questions your particular trustee likes to ask.
You will notice many of these are “yes” or “no” questions.
[info_box]If you are asked a “yes” or “no” question, you should give a “yes” or “no” answer.[/info_box]
The trustee will not think you are being uncooperative; he or she will appreciate your helping to expedite your case.
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Some typical questions asked at a 341 Meeting of the Creditors:
- Do you still live at the address listed on your bankruptcy petition?
- What is your marital status?
- Have you or your spouse ever filed bankruptcy before?
- Did you review and sign your bankruptcy filing?
- Did you understand the contents of your bankruptcy filing?
- Did you receive the trustee’s information sheet? (We give you a copy at your initial consultation. We will give you another copy on the day of your Meeting of the Creditors.)
- Did you list all of your assets?
- Did you list all of your debts?
- Does anyone owe you money?
- Do you have any potential legal claims against any people or any companies?
- Do you pay any domestic support obligations (alimony or child support) to anyone? Does anyone pay them to you? If so, give the name and address of the other party.
- Has anyone recently died from whom you might inherit money?
- Do you understand you must notify the trustee’s office if you inherit anything (or have any other dramatic financial improvement such as winning the lottery) during the 6-month period after your bankruptcy discharge?
- Have you filed your tax return for the most recent tax year?
- Have you received your tax refund for the most recent tax year?
- If you received a tax refund, did you spend it? If so, how did you spend it?
- Do you expect to receive a refund when you file your taxes early next year? If so, how much do you expect to receive?
- Do you own any insurance policies with cash value or with value you can borrow against?
- Have you taken any loans from pensions or retirement accounts in the past 2 years? If so, how did you spend the money?
- If you did not list a car on your assets schedule, the trustee might ask you what you do for transportation.
- When is the last time you used your credit cards? (Any credit card use within 90 days of your filing date can be problematic.)
- Did you incur any debts within 90 days of your bankruptcy filing date?
- If you listed a specialty credit account (like an electronics store or jewelry store), but you did not list any corresponding assets (like electronics or jewelry) that were purchased with the credit account, the trustee will ask you about this.
- Did your payments to any one creditor total $600 or more during the 90 days before you filed bankruptcy? (If you did, these transactions might be impermissible preference payments that can be recovered by the trustee. Exceptions: you are permitted to make payments on secured property you are keeping– examples include car loans and mortgage payments.)
- Are you a party to any executory contracts? (An “executory contract” is an ongoing or uncompleted contract.)
- Have you purchased anything in the last year and agreed to pay for it over a period of time?
- Have you been self-employed in the past 2 years? If you have, the trustee might ask you about property owned by the business.
- Have you owned real estate in the past 3 years? If so, what is the status of it? (You still own it, you sold it, foreclosure, short sale, deed in lieu, etc.)
- If you sold real estate within the past 3 years, did you make a a profit? If so, how did you spend it?
- Have you refinanced and taken cash out or taken a second mortgage on your real estate in the past 2 years? If so, how did you spend the proceeds?
- If you have not yet lived in the same location for a full two years, the trustee will ask you some questions about your previous state of residency to determine if you are using the correct state’s exemptions.
- The trustee’s other questions will depend on the specific contents of your bankruptcy filing.
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