Role of a Bankruptcy Trustee
Are you considering filing for bankruptcy and have questions about the role of a bankruptcy trustee? Contact experienced Jamestown bankruptcy attorney Scott Humble to arrange a free bankruptcy consultation.
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At a bankruptcy, there is more than one trustee. No matter what, there are at least two trustees on a case. You’ve got the US Trustee, who is the policeman of the system. They are going to review your case and make sure that there’s no fraud or that your income was reported correctly and that kind of stuff. They review the cases and if it’s a bad case, yeah, they might show up to court. I haven’t had that happen for years.
There are Case Trustees. Where there’s a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13, there is a trustee for the case. Now for Chapter 13, right now he’s been doing it for over four years, it’s a gentleman in Buffalo, exceptionally nice man, first name is Al. In Pennsylvania, there is a trustee in Pittsburgh. His goal is to go and look at the situation – basically I go and do the paperwork. He looks at my paperwork, makes sure everything is true and correct before he goes and – he has to actually recommend the case to the judge, so he looks at it to make sure he can recommend the case to the judge.
Now in a Chapter 7, the trustee is just at involved, except – the goal here – I don’t want to scare you but the goal is for them to go and look for assets that are not exempt. Exempt means protected. My function is to go and make sure that there are no assets for him to get or her to get and that you’ll be able to keep everything. If there are assets, they do have to go and collect those and distribute them to the creditors pro rata. Evenly, whatever the percentage may be, 10%, everybody gets 10 or 20 or whatever the case may be.
The other function of the Chapter 7 trustee is to go and question you about your case. People get intimated by that. They want me to testify for them; I can’t. I’d like to but I can’t. What you need to understand about either going for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 trustee is that the situation is not going to be volatile or adversarial like you see on TV. It is going to be the same situation as when you sit down with me and we go through the case. It is going to be businesslike. They’re going to make sure that everything is disclosed. That is their main function.
First function is to make sure that we put down everything and disclose everything. There are questions and the questions are very similar – basically it’s the same questions that I ask but in just a touch more detail. The only difference is you’re going to have to have your social security card when you come and see the trustee, your driver’s license or ID and they’re going to swear you in and tape record the conversation. It’ll take somewhere around 10, 15 minutes on a standard case. Then you’re actually done. On a Chapter 13, we go in front of a judge. On a Chapter 7, you’re all done with the court and your case will be discharged technically in 60 days.
If you or someone you love is seeking debt relief and has questions about the role of a bankruptcy trustee, contact us today to arrange a free confidential consultation with dedicated Jamestown bankruptcy lawyer Scott F. Humble. Let his 30+ years of experience work for you.