What do I need to bring with me to my Section 341 Meeting of Creditors?

After you file your Chapter 13 Bankruptcy petition and plan, you will be required to attend a Section 341 meeting, which is an examination–under oath–conducted by the Chapter 13 Trustee. The U.S. Bankruptcy Court will set the date for this mandatory appearance.

At this meeting, the Trustee will place you under oath and ask you questions regarding the content of your proposed bankruptcy plan, your schedules, assets, debts, and other matters. After the Trustee is finished, your creditors will have an opportunity to ask you questions regarding the location and condition of your property, hazard insurance coverage, and other matters related to your financial affairs.

At the Section 341 meeting you are required to provide:

  1. Original Proof of Identification
  2. Original Proof of FULL Social Security Number or Tax Identification Number

Photocopies will NOT be accepted.

In the event of inclement weather or other emergencies, which may cause the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to close or delay opening, please check the U.S. Bankruptcy Court’s website at www.wawb.uscourts.gov. Section 341 meetings scheduled during a U.S. Bankruptcy Court closure will not be held, and you will receive notice of a continued date and time. Please note, however, that if the U.S. Bankruptcy Court opens late, all meetings scheduled at that time and later that morning will be held, and you will be required to appear.

I am self employed. What information do I need to provide the Trustee prior to my Section 341 Meeting of Creditors?

A self-employed debtor operating a business, corporation, or LLC that incurs trade credit must provide the following:

  1. Copies of Federal and State tax returns for the past two years, including relevant business schedules.
  2. Copies of financial statements provided to a third party.
  3. Current books and records of the business if requested.
  4. Monthly profit and loss statements (P&L) for the year preceding the filing.
  5. Current schedule and aging of the account receivables.
  6. Current insurance policies.
  7. Lease agreements.
  8. Six months of bank statements.
  9. Current balance sheet.
  10. A completed copy of the Trustee Business Case Questionnaire

Please submit all required business documents to the Trustee through your attorney.  If the required business documents have not been timely completed and returned, testimony will not be taken at the 341 meeting of creditors, and the Trustee may move to dismiss your case.  The Trustee’s office must receive the required business documents from your attorney no later than 7 days prior to the first scheduled 341 meeting of creditors.

Debtors must also provide quarterly P&L’s and proof that all state and federal tax requirements are being fulfilled.  Additionally, the debtor in business must provide a copy of his/her annual 1040 for each year in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. 

How do I access information about my case?

See our Case Access page.

How do I turn over my tax refunds to the Trustee?

If your Chapter 13 Plan states that all or part of your annual income tax refunds will be committed toward funding your plan, you may send said funds to the Trustee by online payment through Nationwide TFS, or via money order or cashier’s check.  See our payments page for more information. If you have questions about turning over your tax refund to the Trustee, please contact your attorney.

Where do I send tax documents?

You are required to send the Chapter 13 Trustee a copy of your federal and state tax returns, including schedules and statements, for each year that you are in bankruptcy.  All social security numbers, on all pages of said return must be redacted (blacked out) prior to submission. Please include your case number when submitting your completed 1040 tax form and mail to:

Office of the Chapter 13 Trustee
2122 Commerce Street
Tacoma, WA 98402

If you have questions about sending your tax returns to the Trustee, please contact your attorney.

I will not be able to make my plan payment this month. What should I do?

Contact you attorney immediately. Your attorney can file papers asking the judge to change the provisions of your plan. Do not call the Trustee. The Trustee cannot change the provisions of your plan, or make any payment arrangements. Only the bankruptcy judge can do so.

Can I make up missed payments at the end of my plan?

No. The Trustee does not make payment arrangements and the Trustee does not have the authority to change the provisions of your confirmed plan. Only the judge can do that. Contact your attorney if you are not able to pay your plan payments as they come due. The sooner you notify your attorney of changed financial circumstances or an inability to make your plan payment(s), the more likely that he or she will be able to modify the plan. Time is of the essence.

What is a Trustee’s Motion to Dismiss for Delinquency?

If you receive a Trustee’s Motion to Dismiss, contact your attorney immediately. Very often, your attorney can file the appropriate papers opposing the motion to dismiss. You have only 15 days from the date the Trustee’s Motion to Dismiss was mailed to address the problem. Calling or writing to the Trustee does not stop the 15-day period from running, and please note: while the Trustee is eager to see all Debtors successfully complete their plans, he cannot provide legal advice. Unless the full delinquency (and any payments which have come due in the interim) has been posted to your case prior to the designated hearing date, your case will be dismissed.

Can I obtain financing (credit) for the purchase of an automobile while I am in Chapter 13?

If the genuine need for an automobile purchase arises while you are in an active Chapter 13 case, you should contact your attorney to discuss options. The Trustee is empowered to authorize you to obtain credit for the purchase of an automobile, though all such requests undergo a rigorous review process. If you need such relief, your attorney can submit the proper paperwork to initiate a review. Should the Trustee deny your request, you are still free to petition the court for the same. Please remember: absent Trustee or court approval, you may not incur debt of any kind while in Chapter 13.