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"No Asset" Chap 7 Post-Discharge Question

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  • "No Asset" Chap 7 Post-Discharge Question

    First time here, actually inquiring for my boyfriend who had been through a rough time, as I'm certain everyone here has who contemplated, then filed. It is a difficult thing to do. It has been especially stressful for us because sadly, my boyfriend's lawyer is an alcoholic. We suspected as much, but after providing him w/the same paperwork numerous times before filing only to be told he didn't get it, at the 2nd 341 meeting (yes, 2nd, because the Trustee told the lawyer to "be quiet" and come back in a week "organized"), he smelled of alcohol. It has been an adventure to say the least.

    We are in Texas - My question is this, my boyfriend's Chap 7 was discharge 37 days ago. We realize that the Trustee keeps the case open and does his "look back", and we believe he is waiting to see if our house sells (which we're not selling, it's up for sale, but is exempt), and we just got a letter yesterday from the "alcoholic" lawyer saying he needed to fill out this "declaration of assets" that he received a couple of days ago. The letter is dated a week ago, he just sent it yesterday. It is a letter, however, from a law firm "representing" the Trustee (or so it says) requesting a plethora of information regarding bank statements, check copies, etc., all things that are listed on the Statement of Financial Affairs and, have been previously provided in grave detail. What I need to know is, I don't believe this letter is legitimate because wouldn't it be the Trustee who would directly, or his law firm, send a request for this information regarding assets, etc.???

    Also, I can log into Pacer and check the case pleadings every day, especially after the discharge because I wanted to see if anyone filed an objection. There is no listing or indication of this "other" firm allegedly representing the Trustee and we are not providing the information. We have told the "alcoholic lawyer" we no longer need his services and are looking for another lawyer since the case hasn't been "closed", but we want to send a letter to the Judge with this letter asking for clarification of same -

    Thank you for your time -
    Boyfriend filed: 3/31/10, discharged: 7/12/10 - STILL awaiting closing. I pray for miracles every day. Compassion should be found in the dictionary under "Bankruptcy", sadly, it's not!

  • #2
    contact trustee

    Hi cowgirl,

    Sounds like you need to contact the trustee directly. I imagine the judge will not know the answer to your question.

    Since you are in Texas, you probably can appreciate the saying: "Get it straight from the horses mouth"

    Tom in Colo
    Ch7 filed 5/12/2010.....341 meeting 6/30/ of no distribution 8/15/2010.....discharged 10/01/2010.....closed 11/09/2010


    • #3
      This is not unusual. Your Trustee has hired an attorney to finish up the review of your boyfriend's case. Your boyfriend must cooperate and deliver all requested documents to the attorney EVEN IF the documents have already been supplied to the Trustee. The Trustee's attorney will review the information and, if he/she has any more questions he/she will contact your boyfriend's attorney to arrange either an informal meeting, which could be over the phone, or a more formal 2004 Exam.

      To verify that the Trustee has, in fact, hired an attorney, go to PACER and locate the Trustee's Application to Employ Counsel (a copy of which should have been sent to your boyfriend) or call the Trustee's office directly.


      • #4
        Thank you gentlemen, he's actually "pro se" now, and I'm trying to find another lawyer. Thankfully, I work for lawyers (a crazy 23 years) and can find a referral, because the letter the Trustee's lawyer sent wasn't sent to my boyfriend for 7 days and when they impose a deadline, that is just unacceptable from my standpoint. He's lucky he wasn't standing in front of me. I mean, the representation has been lack luster in so many ways. So, I emailed (from my boyfriend's email of course) a "to the point" email to the Trustee letting him know that he is now pro se and, that he just received the letter a week after it was faxed to his "former" lawyer, if he would please confirm that he is represented by this counsel. I have looked on Pacer, but I will look for specifically what you suggested - as I couldn't see anything relative to another lawyer involved and didn't know this, but now it makes sense. Let's just say we are going to provide them with more paperwork and detail, than they asked for - ;-)

        Again, thank you so much - this is truly a great forum!!!!!
        Boyfriend filed: 3/31/10, discharged: 7/12/10 - STILL awaiting closing. I pray for miracles every day. Compassion should be found in the dictionary under "Bankruptcy", sadly, it's not!


        • #5
          Oh, and PS - no, he has NOT received a copy of anything stating this counsel's representation nor, do I see anything on Pacer.
          Boyfriend filed: 3/31/10, discharged: 7/12/10 - STILL awaiting closing. I pray for miracles every day. Compassion should be found in the dictionary under "Bankruptcy", sadly, it's not!


          • #6
            Yes, just looked again - I see no Application to Employ Counsel filed by the Trustee - or anyone. All I see is the last filing, which is the certificate of mailing from the court of the Order of Discharge on 7/12/10. This is what makes me doubt the process of things - as a paralegal, I want to KNOW that something is as it should be because they treat individuals who file (rightfully) like criminals...sadly!
            Boyfriend filed: 3/31/10, discharged: 7/12/10 - STILL awaiting closing. I pray for miracles every day. Compassion should be found in the dictionary under "Bankruptcy", sadly, it's not!


            • #7
              In response to:

              "I see no Application to Employ Counsel"

              This is quite unusual. A Trustee must "employ" counsel if said counsel is to be paid by the estate. Maybe since there are no assets in the estate this normal procedure is bypassed in your jurisdiction. Hopefully the Trustee will be able to clear up any confusion.


              • #8
                Boyfriend filed: 3/31/10, discharged: 7/12/10 - STILL awaiting closing. I pray for miracles every day. Compassion should be found in the dictionary under "Bankruptcy", sadly, it's not!


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