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hey elizabeth - i have read the BK laws briefly and I feel based on what i read the means test is nothing more than a trick the govt puts there to make you feel ok because in 11 USC 707b presumption of abuse its states if you can pay 25% of unsecured then conversion to a 13 would happen your example of 34,999 is approx $2100 net pay a month my budget is $1750 the disposable would be $350 enough to pay 25% of unsecured. so the trustee would not issue a presumption of abuse exception? What i really meant on my question is does the trustee after the 341 meeting do a periodic audit on me to see if im working or not do they have extensive databases available to them to see how much im making without paystubs I saw this database years ago when i was at the unemployment office all she did was is input my social and got all my job pay info in the last 5 years.
based on what ive read I dont understand why in the BK code they have the median income and they also have presumption of abuse in 11 USC 707b which has greater power on the BK decision on chapter 7 because in there if you can pay 25% of unsecured creditors in 5 years then conversion to chapter 13 will happen. you stated $34,999 year but that is approx $2150 net pay month my budget is $1750 on scedules that is $400 disposable income ($400 * 12 * 5 = $24000 --- 50% of my unsecured)
First, you are NOT in a Chapter 13. So STOP reading the Chapter 13 rules. I realize you are worried about your bankruptcy, and are trying to understand a large text of rules and procedures which are incredibly difficult to understand. They have to be read in conjunction with other rules and then do not forget to read them with ALL of the case law that interprets them in the circuit which you are in. This is why most people in America hire an attorney to file their bankruptcy. It is why people like me go to law school, take bankruptcy classes for 4 months at a time 9 hours a week, take and pass bar exams and practice a career in the field. Bankruptcy attorneys are not just for show. ;)
Next, I can guarantee you with 100% assurance that the 341 Meeting of Creditors is NOT an audit. It has never been an audit, NOR is its purpose to try and convert you to Chapter 13. You have been clearly mislead or misinformed. EVERY debtor in America is required to attend the 341. The trustee will interview you under oath to determine if you have properly a) filled out your bankruptcy schedules, b) providing him/her all your required paperwork(6 months paystubs, 2-4 years tax returns, 6 months bank statements, etc), c) see if you have been truthful. Unless you are hiding bags of money and jewels somewhere, have an airplane you haven't listed, or have lied grossly on your petition, you should not be worrying. The trustee has NO desire to convert you to a Chapter 13, since it would be against his interest. He gets paid to administer your estate in bankruptcy. Additionally, there is NO magic audit website he is looking at. He does; however, look at your tax returns, which can clearly show a picture of someone's income. Even if you were making millions years ago, it will not be cause for a conversion to a Chapter 13.
Good luck at your 341 and stop worrying!
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