An Unexpected Deputy: My Chapter 13 Trustee

Posted by William Kain on October 14, 2014 at 8:32 AM
William Kain

chapter_13_trustee-1Many debtors are uncertain about the role a trustee plays in their case, so I’ve asked one of my previous clients to share his thoughts.

Could I Trust the Trustee?

When I filed my Chapter 13 bankruptcy case, I did not really know who to trust and what role each player in the bankruptcy process played. I was going into my bankruptcy with a very uneasy and emotional mindset. My guard was up and I wasn’t willing to easily trust anyone. 

I met my Chapter 13 trustee at the First Meeting of Creditors, also known as the 341 Meeting. He presided over the hearing and asked me questions under oath about my assets, debts, income and expenses to ensure that the information I provided in my bankruptcy schedules was accurate. The entire hearing lasted about five minutes and was not nearly as awful as I had imagined it to be in my mind.

During this meeting I realized that the trustee had a huge role in my bankruptcy case and I would be dealing with this person throughout my entire repayment plan.

What Is The Role Of A Chapter 13 Trustee?

A trustee is appointed in each Chapter 13 case to review the repayment plan, ensure that it adheres to bankruptcy laws, and to administer the repayment plan after it is confirmed by the court. Part of the duties of the Chapter 13 trustee is to review the income and expenses listed in the petition, to ensure that the calculations are correct. Based upon those calculations and other information provided, the Chapter 13 trustee reviews the proposed repayment plan to determine if it was fair to my creditors.

The trustee also reviews all of the claims filed by creditors and has the authority to object to claims that are improperly filed. I was thankful that I had someone in my corner that protected my rights and ensured that creditors adhered to bankruptcy laws when filing claims in my case.

In the beginning I was a little anxious knowing that the Chapter 13 trustee would be reviewing my case and would advise the court if my proposed repayment plan should be confirmed or denied. Bill, my attorney, assured me that he would work diligently to ensure that the repayment plan we propose would meet all of the requirements under the Bankruptcy Code. Also, after Bill explained the role of the Chapter 13 trustee in my bankruptcy, I realized that the trustee was more like a partner than a cop, because it was this persons’ job to ensure that my Chapter 13 repayment plan was successful, and that everyone plays by the rules.

Now that my plan is set, I make my monthly payments directly to my Chapter 13 trustee. He distributes the money to my creditors in accordance with the terms of my Chapter 13 repayment plan. Having this responsibility off my shoulders for the length of my repayment plan was much needed after my long battle with overwhelming.


If you would like to hear more firsthand stories or receive more information regarding bankruptcy, you can sign up for our monthly newsletter.

Sign up for our e-Newsletter

Take the first step toward  getting your life back  Let us help you get started on your road to a debt-free life Sign Up for a Free Consultation