What to expect when you go to “Court”?

I am amazed each and every time how nervous people are to come to their bankruptcy “court” date, or what we call the Section 341 hearing. (named after the section of the bankruptcy code) I tell my clients it is formal, even though it is not in a Courtroom, but that there is nothing to be afraid of, so long as they have answered everything truthfully. Yet, one after one is nervous as all h____ until it is over! And then they all say the same thing, that they cannot believe how easy that was! You see with Bankruptcy, it is all in the preparation. When you retain our law firm to prepare your Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy documents, we take it very very seriously. We know that if the documents are prepared carefully and done right, then all will go smooth and there will be no surprises when we go to Court. In our jurisdiction, in the Northern District of Illinois, you don’t go to Court but rather to an office, where you will be examined under oath by a court appointed Trustee or Trustee’s representative. Your testimony is being recorded and everything you say could be used against you just as in a Courtroom. The important thing is that if your lawyer prepares the documents correctly, and goes over the details with you, the lawyer can predict with almost 100% certainty how your bankruptcy case will play out. The worst thing you can do when filing bankruptcy is to keep information from your lawyer and not be totally candid when filing a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13.