If you’ve filed bankruptcy, or have been doing some research as you consider filing, you have probably ready about the meeting of creditors (also called the 341 meeting, after the Bankruptcy Code section that requires it). At that meeting creditors can appear and ask questions about your petition and financial state of affairs. However, if a creditor wants to ask more detailed questions, it can ask the court to allow it to conduct a Rule 2004 examination by filing a motion.
If the debtor is in a cooperative mood, he or she will appear at an agreed upon time and place. If the creditor is not confident that the debtor will appear, it will issue a subpoena for the debtor’s appearance. Failure to appear as required by the subpoena could result in sanctions.
If the debtor still refuses to appear, the creditor can resort to the relief provided in Rule 2005 of the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure. Rule 2005 allows the creditor to ask the court for an order to compel a debtor’s attendance. Such an order is given to the US Marshal to enforce. The marshal will bring the debtor before the court to answer the creditor’s questions.
The better course is probably to just meet with the creditor at a time and place you both agree to and get the questions out of the way and done with. Unfortunately, a creditor has a great deal of latitude to ask questions about a debtor’s finances, making objections difficult, if not pointless.
If you have received a subpoena to appear at a Rule 2004 exam, you should contact your bankruptcy attorney right away. If you don’t have an attorney, or your current attorney excludes appearing at a Rule 2004 exam in your representation agreement, give us a call. You can call 303.331.3403 to talk to an experienced Colorado bankruptcy attorney.