Your Chapter 13 confirmation hearing (341 meeting) is a simple hearing where the trustee reviews your income and budget to make sure that the plan is feasible. Do you make enough income to afford the payments? Did you include paying necessary taxes in your budget are common issues? The 341 hearing and the confirmation hearing are held at the same time in Louisville, Kentucky but on different days in Indiana and Lexington. The Chapter 13 trustee will ask primarily questions about your income, expenses, and any transfers of property prior to filing. Your plan must pay priority debts such as income tax claims and secured debts in full. You Chapter 13 plan may lower the interest rates on some secured debts such as a car loan and lower or eliminate penalties and interest on income taxes. Interest during the bankruptcy is normally never paid on unsecured debts. The Chapter 13 trustee administers an oath and you would identify yourself by producing a government photo id such as a drivers license and your social security card. The Chapter 13 trustee is not the judge, but your answers are under oath.
At the 341 Meeting
Long before the hearing your attorney will send documentation to the trustee to prove the facts in your petition. There is a video in our video section that shows what a 341 meeting is like.
You will notice that the hearing is very informal but you should still be properly dressed, respectful and ready to answer any questions.
The Chapter 13 trustee earns a very small fee to verify the facts in your petition and earns a percentage from the payments you make to him for your creditors. He will often insist that your car payments be paid through him and that the payments be payroll deducted to ensure payments are paid on time. If the Chapter 13 payments are not paid on time the case is dismissed. Mortgage payments are paid directly by you to the mortgage company starting the month you file. If the mortgage payments are not made on time, the lender will file a motion to the stay and the house will go back into foreclosure. Your Chapter 13 payments to the trustee start the month you file. Creditors can file an objection to your plan but most creditors will work out any objections with the attorney or trustee prior to the 341 or confirmation hearing.