After your bankruptcy case is filed, you will need to make one appearance at what is called a meeting of creditors, or 341 meeting. This is supposed to be within 20-40 days after filing, and while it’s usually pretty close to about a month, they’ve been running about 6-7 weeks if your meeting is in St. Cloud. The locations are based on the county you live in, although not necessarily in your own county – for instance, for chapter 7 meetings, Hennepin and Anoka county residents go to the federal courthouse downtown Minneapolis, Ramsey, Washington, Chisago and Dakota residents go to the federal courthouse in St. Paul, and Wright, Sherburne, Streams and Isanti County residents go to the American Red Cross building in St. Cloud. Chapter 13 meetings are either held at the trustee’s office at 6th & Hennepin in Minneapolis for metro debtors, and various outstate locations for outstate debtors. This sheet shows a more detailed list of where the meetings are located, by county (341 locations).
The term “Creditors meeting” is sort of a misnomer. While all of your creditors get notified, they almost never show up. In fact, even if there is going to be an objection to your case, the creditors do not need to show up at the meeting; they just need to file it before the deadline passes. The meeting is not a hearing; there isn’t a judge, and no decisions get made. Rather, the meeting is administered by a trustee, who is an attorney appointed by the court to oversee your case, to see if there are assets to administer (or in a 13, to see if there are any issues with your plan being confirmed).
They typically schedule about five meetings per half hour, so they do appreciate you being prepared in advance. In particular, most trustees ask that you provide our office with your bank statements showing balances as of the date of filing, as well as any pay stubs since the case has been filed, prior to the meeting. At the meeting, you will need to bring proof of ID and Social Security number. There is an informational sheet (341 Questions) in the hallway that they will ask if you have read.
The trustee asks everybody the same questions, and then they ask some specific questions about your case. It is a good idea to have reviewed your petition prior to the meeting. Any errors or corrections should be discussed with your attorney before the meeting. You should answer out loud (can’t say “mm-hmm” or nod your head) as they tape-record this, and you should have your cell phone off or on vibrate.