Hello: I am sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I went offline to run some errands.
Your follow-up questions:
Oh my goodness. You don't even know how much you are helping me right now. I have some more questions.
Question 1: When we met with the Lawyer, he kept telling me that he needs 6 months Profit and Loss statements. However, when I look in quickbooks, there are two versions. A detailed one and then the standard one. Which one do you think he is talking about? If I print out the detailed one, it's very long.
Response 1: Provide him with the standard one. Then if he needs the long one, you can provide that one at that time.
Question 2: Also, he said the trustee was going to ask about our inventory. We don't have inventory sitting around. We have a computer business. My husband orders only what is needed and then it goes right back out the door. How specific is the trustee going to get about this? I just don't want the trustee to think we are hiding inventory.
Response 2: All is required of you is that you have complete and accurate records for your business so that if you are audited by the U.S. Trustee's Office or if the Chapter 7 Trustee needs additional information, you can easily provide the records to them (through your Attorney).
Question 3: Are there any special considerations when a husband and wife are separated?
Response 3: Unless you are legally separated, that is, there is Court Order for the separation, a spouse filing for bankruptcy protection must provided information requested for the other spouse. That is, both spouses’ incomes must be used in the Means Test calculation. Also and more importantly, if this is a business filing, Means Test calculation is not required. In addition, if your debts are primarily non-consumer debts, you would not be subject to Means Test requirements. This means that you can still file for Chapter 7 if your income is above the current income guidelines for your family size in your State.
Question 4: I received a summons to court (from a credit card company) back in July and it's at 1pm this Monday. However, in the summons it states that if I plan to go to the trial to defend myself about the money owed that I need to let them know within 15 days. I didn't let them know because I do owe the money so what will happen now?
Response 4(a): If your bankruptcy filing is imminent, that is, if your Attorney is about to file the case, you can just ignore the hearing because even if a Default Judgment is issued against you, you can put the Judgment in your bankruptcy filing. Also, once the bankruptcy case is filed, the Court case would be suspended pending the outcome of your bankruptcy case UNLESS the creditor files a Motion for Relief firm the Automatic Stay to get permission of the Bankruptcy to proceed with the Court case. I have NEVER known the credit card companies to do this. What commonly happens is that once the case is filed the debt collectors would back off. However, once the bankruptcy case is filed, you must inform the Court about the filing so that the case can be suspended. Your Attorney would not do this for you unless he specifically agreed to do it. So, you need to be prepared to send a Notice of Bankruptcy Case Filing that your Attorney would provide to you immediately after filing your bankruptcy case to give to the Court and fax to the creditor’s counsel.
Will I get in trouble if I don't show up anyway?
Response 4(b): No, but you would have Default Judgment against you. As stated previously, if your Attorney is about to file the case, then there is nothing to worry about. Once the case is filed, the Court case would be suspended. Notice of Bankruptcy Case filing MUST be provided to the Court so that the Court would suspend all hearings in the case. If the Bankruptcy case is successful, the Court would dismiss the case.
Do I call them or just ignore it?
Response 4(c): You can just ignore it, but see my previous responses.
And how can I stop the judgement after the court date?
Response 4(d): Judgment would be included in your bankruptcy case, making it worthless once you receive your Discharge Order from the bankruptcy Court. Now, this should not be confused with dismissal of the case. Discharge means that Court has granted your petition for relief and wiped out all the debts that are supposed to be wiped out with exception of child support, alimony, some taxes, student loans if you did not file a Complaint to Determine the Dischargeability of the loans and the Court rules that the loans can be discharged; Court fines, and penalties. Hopefully, your Attorney would file the case very soon after that to prevent the creditor/debt collector from putting a lien on your property and complicating your bankruptcy case.
Question 5: How long does the meeting usually last?
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX Thank you for your quick reply before. Hope to hear from you today.
Response 5: The Meeting of Creditors (Section 341 Meeting) does not last long, usually for few minutes. However, I have personally seen ones that lasted more than 30 minutes where there were many issues with the case and the Trustee asked many questions to try to get to the bottom of things. Usually this happens if the bankruptcy schedules were not completed correctly or assets were omitted, which were discovered by the Trustee, or a creditor actually shows up and tries to use the Meeting for "cross examination" of the debtor. However, creditors rarely show up for the meeting despite the name.