There is a lot of misinformation available when it comes to filing bankruptcy. One common misconception about filing bankruptcy surrounds attending court.
When people think about the court, they envision a large courtroom and rows of seats. On the far end of the room is a raised platform where the judge sits, and off to one side is the jury box. This does qualify as a courtroom, but it’s not the type of courtroom you have for a bankruptcy case.
When a bankruptcy case is filed, a hearing called the Section 341 meeting is scheduled. This is the one mandatory hearing in most consumer bankruptcy cases. This hearing is simply a meeting with the Trustee that has been appointed to review the case. The Trustee is not a judge, there will not be a jury, and the room is just full of other people that have filed bankruptcy. Creditors are notified about the hearing and are allowed to attend, but that rarely happens. It usually ends up being a short meeting with the Trustee and the Debtor. Now, however, due to the COVID pandemic, those hearings are conducted by telephone. It’s changed things a little, obviously, but the content of the hearings is still the same.
So, yes, there is a court appearance required in consumer bankruptcy cases. No, you will not meet the judge or have a jury. Just remember to be on time.
If you need help filing for bankruptcy, contact WM Law today.