A Philadelphia Attorney Answers Creditor’s Questions
Alfred Abel Law Offices has a long history of assisting in bankruptcy proceedings, for both debtors and creditors. As a creditor whose owed debts have become part of a bankruptcy proceeding, you have the right to legal representation and to ensure that your own needs are considered.
Here, we answer some of the most common creditors’ questions we hear.
What is a meeting of creditors?
A meeting of creditors – also called a 341 hearing – is an opportunity for the debtor to speak directly to the trustee overseeing the debtor’s bankruptcy case. The meeting is an initial screening for the debtor to lay out the documentation of the debts owed and to make a case as to why they should be forgiven for some repayments. It is not an opportunity for you to ask in-depth questions about the filing or the debtor’s assets. There is another procedure for that, where the debtor has to testify under oath in front of a stenographer.
Attending this meeting is not mandatory, but it is a chance to hear what the debtor has to say and ask some basic questions that may help bring about the best outcome for you.
Trustee Questions in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13
During both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy proceedings, the trustee overseeing the case will make an appearance during the meeting of creditors to ask questions of the debtor. The questions may provide critical information. Some of these questions include:
- Has the debtor filed for bankruptcy in the past?
- Did they list all their assets and creditors?
- What is the value of their home?
- Do they have any existing domestic support obligations?
- Are they owed any outstanding debts?
- Do they have any legal claims or pending claims against other parties?
- Do they expect to receive an inheritance soon?
- Were professional appraisers used to determine the value of items?
For a creditor, these questions will help uncover other potential sources of funds for repaying debts, which will then be considered in the upcoming bankruptcy hearings. The trustee represents the interests of all the unsecured creditors, so you can rely on the trustee or hire your own private attorney.