Once you file for bankruptcy, you will have some time before you go through the meeting of creditors. This is the time in which your bankruptcy will discharge. While you wait for your meeting, take some time to prepare yourself to make the process run more smoothly. Good preparation will also help you feel more comfortable because you will know what to expect when you go in.
Provide All Necessary Documents to Your Lawyer
Provide all the required documents to your lawyer in a timely manner so that everything will be ready for your meeting. Be sure you submit copies of your documentation, not your originals.
Your packet of documents should include your pay stubs or proof that you have an income, your bank statements, and your financial accounts, including certificates of deposit, pensions, stocks, and 401(k) accounts.
You also need to provide statements that show the value of your life insurance policies. If you have an updated statement for home and car insurance, remit this information to your lawyer as well. In addition, you will need to provide updated statements which show the balance of your home loan and car loan balances.
Bring Proper Identification
Before you go into your meeting, be sure you have the necessary identification. You will need to provide a government-issued identification, including a passport, driver's license, or a military identification card. You will also need to prove your Social Security number. Most people use a Social Security Card, but an IRS Form W2 will suffice.
Before you leave your home to go to your meeting, triple check that you have the necessary identification. If you do not bring your identification, your meeting will have to take place at another time. This means that your discharge will not occur as soon as you expected.
Always make your best effort to dress professionally for your meeting. You do not need to purchase a brand new, formal outfit, but wear something conservative and sharp. For men, a nice button-down shirt and slacks with a tie is ideal. For women, dress slacks or a skirt with a nice blouse is fine.
Arrange for Childcare
If you have young children, you must secure childcare for them during your meeting. A creditor meeting is an important event which requires your full attention. You may want to hire backup for your first childcare option in the event something happens.
Arrive Early to the Meeting
Plan to get to your meeting early to meet with your lawyer to discuss your case beforehand. If you are late, you will cause a delay for the other meetings on the schedule for that day. Your meeting can be cancelled if you are too late. To prevent a delay, double check your meeting time and plan to arrive at least half an hour early.
Give Your Contact Information to Your Lawyer
Be certain that your attorney has all of your contact information, including your cell phone number. Your attorney should already have this information, but always double check right before the meeting date. Also, be sure you have a mobile number for your attorney as well in the event something happens on the meeting date and you run late or cannot make it on time.
Always be sure you are as prepared as possible for your creditor meeting. If everything goes as it should, you will receive your discharge much faster than you would otherwise. If you need help with your bankruptcy and your creditor meeting, please contact Scholtens and Averitt, PLC. We are here to help you get through the bankruptcy process as quickly and easily as possible.