The Role of a Trustee in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Posted by Wesley Scott on November 20, 2017 at 4:20 PM
Wesley Scott

What does a chapter 7 trustee do?.jpegIf you’re considering filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Minnesota, you probably already know how important an experienced Minnesota bankruptcy attorney is to your case (and for reasons why Kain & Scott are the best bankruptcy law firm in Minnesota to handle your Chapter 7 bankruptcy, see below!)

There is another person, however, who is also important to your Chapter 7 bankruptcy: the bankruptcy trustee. Many people have never heard of a bankruptcy trustee and are unsure of what their role is in the bankruptcy process.

Simply, your bankruptcy trustee is appointed to your case and reviews your petition, liquidates your assets, pays your creditors, presides over the 341 meeting, and ensures that both you and your creditors have abided by the applicable laws. For a more in-depth look at the role of the trustee in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Minnesota, see our list of frequently asked questions below.

What is a Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee?

Once your bankruptcy petition is filed, a bankruptcy trustee will be assigned to your case by the United States Trustee’s office. The trustee is responsible for reviewing your bankruptcy petition and schedules to make sure the information in the filing is accurate.

What does the Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee do?

The Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee has several important functions:

  • Paying your unsecured creditors: the trustee will review your assets to determine which ones can be liquidated and then redistribute the value of those assets between your unsecured creditors on a pro-rata basis.
  • 341 meeting: the bankruptcy trustee will also be present at the 341 meeting (along with you and your attorney) and will ask you simple questions about your petition to ensure that the petition is accurate, complete and that there are no indications that you engaged in fraud.
  • Prevent preferential treatment and fraudulent transfers: your Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee will also review your financial information to see if you gave preferential treatment to one creditor (for example, claiming you were unable to make payments on all of your debt but making substantial payments on one particular debt) or fraudulently transferred your assets to someone else to hide them from the court.
  • Protect you from unfair liens against your assets: when you owe money to creditors, one of the ways that they can collect is by attaching liens against your assets. One of the important functions of a bankruptcy trustee is to ensure that, if liens have been attached, that they were done properly and were not attached after you filed for Chapter 7.

What does a Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee require from me?

Generally, your bankruptcy trustee has all the information he or she needs within your bankruptcy petition. In some cases, however, your trustee may request additional information either verbally during your 341 meeting or in the form of documents. During your 341 meeting, it is important to answer all of the trustee’s questions as accurately as possible. Don’t worry—the 341 meeting is not adversarial and only the trustee will be asking you questions. Further, your trustee may request to see additional documents to supplement your bankruptcy petition such as:

  • Pay stubs
  • Tax returns
  • Bank statements
  • Documents relating to your home (deed, mortgage paperwork, appraisal, etc.)
  • Documents relating to your other real property, such as titles
  • Other documents that further illustrate your finances

How is a bankruptcy trustee different from a bankruptcy attorney?

Simply, your bankruptcy attorney works for you to ensure that your unsecured debts are erased and your rights are protected. The bankruptcy trustee, on the other hand, is more of a neutral third-party whose objective is to liquidate your assets and pay your creditors.

How can Kain & Scott help me erase my debts and repair my credit?

Your relationship with Kain & Scott starts with your free initial consultation where one of our friendly and knowledgeable bankruptcy specialists will go over your basic financial information to determine whether Chapter 7 bankruptcy is right for you.

From there, we offer our clients quick and easy bankruptcy filing from the comfort of your own home, either online, via Skype, or over the telephone, and will file your petition within days to get your debts discharged fast!

Your bankruptcy attorney will also accompany you to the 341 meeting of creditors to help guide you through the process and answer any questions you might have.

After your bankruptcy petition is filed, and your meeting is complete, all you have to do is sit back, relax, and wait for your unsecured debt to be discharged! 60 days after you meet with the trustee, you receive your bankruptcy discharge, and you can be debt-free and get a fresh start. And, thanks to our FREE 90 Day Credit Repair Program, you can also repair your credit to help you obtain the financing your family needs.

For more information on how Kain & Scott can erase your debts and repair your credit fast, visit us online at www.kainscott.com or contact our office for your free initial consultation.

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Topics: Bankruptcy, Chapter 7, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy