I was prompted to write this blog post because I just filed a Long Island Chapter 7 bankruptcy case and the court scheduled the meeting of creditors for a date that is only 25 days away. With every other case I’ve filed during the past few years, the hearing was always over a month later.
So what’s the story with when the meeting of creditors is held?
What is a Section 341 Hearing?
First, In every single bankruptcy case, be it Chapter 7, 11 or 13, there is an initial meeting at the bankruptcy court called the Meeting of Creditors. In consumer cases under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, the purpose of the meeting is for the court-appointed trustee to review the case with the debtor by examining the debtor under oath.
Section 341 of the Bankruptcy Code provides for this hearing, which is why it is often referred to as the “341 Hearing.”
The Bankruptcy Rules Provide the Time Frame For Holding the Meeting of Creditors
Although the 341 hearing is usually held about a month after the petition is filed, it can sometimes be held much earlier than that, and other times, much later.
Bankruptcy Rule 2003(a) sets forth the time parameters for the 341 Hearing:
In a Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 case, the meeting must be held no fewer than 20 days, and no more than 40 days after the date the petition is filed.
However, in a Chapter 13 case, the meeting shall be held no fewer than 20 days, and no more than 50 days after the date of filing.
When the bankruptcy court is operating very efficiently, meetings tend to be sooner. When the court is overburdened, or trustees are taking vacations, the time frame is longer.
When the there was a massive rush of bankruptcy filings in September and October 2005 because consumers were anxious to file their bankruptcy petitions before the bankruptcy laws were about to change, the bankruptcy court could not accommodate the great number of cases, and most debtors in New York had to wait 60 to 100 days for their 341 hearings.
There’s Lots of Information About Preparing for the Meeting of Creditors on this Blog
One of the biggest concerns my clients have is how to prepare for the meeting of creditors and what to do about going to the bankruptcy court for the very first time. As such, I have written extensively about this.
If you have a meeting of creditors coming up, the following posts will be helpful:
Everything That Can Go Wrong With the Meeting of Creditors. Part Three: More Problems and Dilemmas 
If You Have a Meeting of Creditors Coming Up Soon on Long Island and You Want to Find Out Info About Your Trustee
I have a series of posts containing biographies of all of the Long Island Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 trustees: biographies and profiles of Long Island bankruptcy trustees and judges .
You Must Provide Identification at the Meeting of Creditors
Here is a post about what identification you need to provide when you go to bankruptcy court: You Need Certain Identification to File for Bankruptcy .
Will Creditors Show Up At the Meeting of Creditors?
It’s very unlikely that creditors will show up: Will Creditors Show Up For My Hearing In Bankruptcy Court?  However, here’s a post I wrote about what kind of questions they can ask if they do show up: If a Creditor Shows Up at the Meeting of Creditors in Bankruptcy Court, What Questions Can They Ask? .
Directions to the Central Islip Bankruptcy Court on Long Island
If your meeting of creditors is in Central Islip, here’s how to get to the court: Directions to Central Islip Bankruptcy Court – Long Island .