Filing of Case
A Chapter 13 case is started with the filing of a petition, schedules, and related documents with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court.
The filing of a Chapter 13 petition generally results in the “automatic stay” of most collection activity against the debtor. The Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court provides notice of the filing of the bankruptcy case to all creditors.
Meeting of Creditors
About five weeks after the Chapter 13 case is filed, the Chapter 13 trustee holds the creditors’ meeting. During this meeting, the debtor is placed under oath and both the Chapter 13 trustee and any creditors in attendance may ask the debtor questions about his financial affairs and the terms of the proposed Chapter 13 plan. In most cases, no creditors take the opportunity to attend. Bankruptcy judges do not attend the meeting of creditors.
About a month after the creditors’ meeting, the confirmation hearing is held before the Bankruptcy Court to consider confirmation or approval of the debtor’s proposed Chapter 13 plan. The confirmation of the Chapter 13 plan binds the debtor and creditors to the provisions of the Chapter 13 plan.
Chapter 13 Plan Payments
The debtor make payments under a typical Chapter 13 plan over a period of three to five years. The length of the Chapter 13 Plan depends on various factors, including the amount of the debtor’s projected disposable income and the amount of non-exempt assets.
The Chapter 13 discharge order is generally entered after the completion of all the payments required under the debtor’s Chapter 13 plan.