The Bankruptcy Trustee

A bankruptcy trustee is appointed to represent the interests of creditors in a bankruptcy case.  He or she reviews the petition filing’s schedules, documents and items that are claimed exempt to make sure everything looks proper and that there is no abuse.  If there items that are nonexempt, the trustee will attempt to sell it in order to pay back unsecured debtors.  If the costs of selling an item outweigh the value of the item, then the trustee may allow the bankruptcy petitioner to just keep the item.

The trustee will be present at the 341(a) meeting of creditors.  In reality, the creditors rarely show up in most cases because a bankruptcy petitioner will not have any assets.  The trustee will usually just ask the petitioner to see a government issued ID to confirm the petitioner’s identity, a Social Security Card, the latest tax return, and ask basic questions such as confirming the numbers on the schedules in the bankruptcy filing.  The meeting is usually 5-10 minutes.