Administering Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases filed in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Ohio - Eastern Division (Cleveland), comprising Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake and Lorain Counties

Meeting of Creditors



What is the Meeting of Creditors?

Approximately four (4) weeks after your Chapter 13 petition is filed with the Bankruptcy Court, you will be required to attend the Meeting of Creditors.  The Meeting of Creditors gives the Trustee and your creditors an opportunity to talk to you about your finances and your plan for repaying creditors.  The Trustee will also ask about assets you own, debts you owe, income you earn and expenses you incur.  If you own a business, the Trustee will inquire about the operation of your business.


This examination is recorded and conducted under oath and penalty of perjury.  You are required to answer each question accurately, truthfully and to the best of your ability.  Your failure to appear at this meeting may result in the dismissal of your case.  If circumstances will prevent you from attending this meeting, contact your attorney immediately.  Work or family commitments are not satisfactory excuses for missing your scheduled meeting time.  If you need an interpreter, one may be provided for you at no expense.


When and where is the Meeting of Creditors?

You will receive a notice in the mail from the Bankruptcy Court detailing the date and time of your Meeting of Creditors.  The meeting is conducted telephonically.  Hearings do not always start on time.  Please allow a window of up to 60 minutes after the scheduled meeting time to receive a telephone call.


Who must attend the Meeting of Creditors?

If the case is a single filing, only the debtor must appear.  If the case is a joint filing, both filing parties must attend.  Your attorney should appear with you. 


What documentation should be submitted prior to this meeting?

You are required to submit the following items of identification to your attorney prior to the meeting:

  • A valid, unexpired government issued photo ID (driver’s license, state ID, employee ID, passport, etc.). 


  • Proof of your social security number.  Acceptable forms of proof of social security number are a social security card, social security statement, W-2 form, or other official documentation that indicates name and social security number.  (A tax return is not an acceptable form for proof of social security number.)

If you do not remit satisfactory documentation of your identity and social security number to your attorney for submission to the Trustee, the Meeting of Creditors will not be conducted and you will need to reappear on another date.

What should be submitted to the Trustee prior to the meeting?

Prior to the Meeting of Creditors your attorney should have filed with the court or provided the Trustee the following documents:

  • a valid, unexpired government issued photo ID and proof of social security
  • Recent pay advices. (If your spouse is not filing bankruptcy, recent pay advices of the non-filing spouse may also be required by the Trustee)
  • Your federal income tax return for the most recent calendar year. (If your spouse is not filing bankruptcy, the recent federal tax return of the non-filing spouse may also be required by the Trustee)
  • Affidavit of support if you are receiving regular financial assistance from a friend or family member, other than your spouse.
  • Business questionnaire and other related documents, if applicable. 

Upon conclusion of the Meeting of Creditors, the Trustee may require additional documents be provided such as savings, checking or brokerage account statements, verification of income and expenses, vehicle title or lease agreement, evidence of vehicle insurance, or business information.  Failure to timely provide these items may prevent the Trustee from conducting a proper analysis of your current financial situation and proposed bankruptcy plan; and may result in the Trustee asking the Bankruptcy Court to dismiss your Chapter 13 case.


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