Posted on 30-03-20

MARY K. VIEGELAHN
STANDING CHAPTER 13 TRUSTEE
SAN ANTONIO DIVISION

VIDEOCONFERENCE
§341(a) MEETING OF CREDITORS
CORONAVIRUS EMERGENCY POLICY

Effective with §341 meetings scheduled for April 15, 2020 and until further notice, §341(a) Meetings of Creditors will temporarily be conducted via Zoom videoconference. All parties in interest will attend remotely and through Zoom videoconference capabilities. The structure and requirements of a traditional §341 meeting will still apply, including but not limited, the requirement to provide certain documents 7 days in advance of the meeting; unfiled tax returns must be filed at least one day prior to the meeting and provided to the trustee; and debtor(s) must provide appropriate identification and verification of the SSN. Documentation such as current pay information and bank statements often presented at the §341 meeting should be presented to the trustee in advance of the meeting. Please continue to use the secure document portal to provide all relevant documentation.

In order to attend the meeting, you must have access to an appropriate camera, microphone and speakers. Most laptop computers, desktop computers, tablets and smartphones should be equipped for this purpose; however, should you require additional time to obtain the necessary equipment please let me know and I will adjourn the meeting for a brief period of time.

The trusteeship will be utilizing the Zoom videoconferencing service (https://zoom.us/). If participating by laptop, please visit the website in advance of the meeting to familiarize yourself with the process. If using a tablet or smartphone, please download the “ZOOM Cloud Meetings” app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store in advance of the meeting. If the debtor does not have access to this equipment a phone number will be provided with the link to allow the debtor to dial in via telephone. The number to dial into will be the Houston #. However, this is to be used only in those situations where a debtor cannot access videoconferencing.

At least 10 days prior to the §341 meeting, debtor’s counsel will receive an email from the trusteeship containing a case #, scheduled time, and meeting link. PLEASE PROVIDE THE EMAIL ADDRESS WHERE YOU WOULD LIKE THE MEETING LINK SENT TO: msellers@sach13.com. PLEASE BE SURE TO NOTIFY YOUR CLIENT(S) THEY WILL BE ATTENDING THE MEETING REMOTELY VIA ZOOM VIDEOCONFERENCE AND NOT AT THE ADDRESS SET FORTH ON THE §341 NOTICE. PLEASE ALSO PROVIDE YOUR CLIENT(S) THE MEETING LINK. IF YOU HAVE YOUR CLIENT(S) EMAIL ADDRESS PLEASE FORWARD TO msellers@sach13.com or cvasquez@sach13.com AND THE ZOOM INVITE WILL BE SENT TO YOUR CLIENT(S). THIS IS BEING DONE AS A COURTESY AND THE RESPONSBILITY LIES WITH YOU, AS COUNSEL, TO ALSO CONTACT YOUR CLIENT(S).

At least 5 minutes prior to the scheduled time, please click the meeting link, follow the prompts to begin the meeting and activate sound and video, and wait for the meeting to begin. Meetings will be scheduled every 15 minutes. Due to the rigid nature of this scheduling, it is imperative that you be on time and prepared for your appointment. Failure to do so may result in the expiration of your time slot and the meeting be adjourned. While my office will do its best to schedule counsel’s client consecutively I cannot guarantee this will occur. If the §341 meeting cannot be concluded within the allotted time it will be adjourned to another date. Unlike the traditional setting where I can extend the typical 12 minute allocation to complete the meeting this will not allow that flexibility. If the meeting is adjourned my office will attempt to schedule another Zoom videoconference as soon as possible to conclude the meeting and know it may not be on a Wednesday but could be at a date mutually convenient to the parties.

If you are a creditor or creditor’s counsel who would like to attend the meeting, please contact the trusteeship at: msellers@sach13.com, cvasquez@sach13.com, or debtor’s counsel to obtain a copy of the link. If you are a debtor’s counsel and are aware of a creditor who would like to attend, please forward the above email.

If you are a pro se debtor (representing yourself) please contact the trusteeship at: msellers@sach13.com or cvasquez@sach13.com for either a meeting link or an adjournment.

We understand that this a new and unfamiliar method of conducting §341 meetings, but these are unique times and we must work together to ensure the continuation of the Chapter 13 process. We request your patience as we, too, become familiar and comfortable with this new technology. Your cooperation and understanding about its limitations in scheduling flexibility is appreciated and my office will attempt to be as flexible as possible.

Please note that this is subject to change or revisions on possibly short notice as the process evolves and my office will attempt to keep everyone informed. Please check my website: www.sach13.com on a regular basis for updates.

Should you require assistance please do not hesitate to contact my staff or myself. Please initially contact: msellers@sach13.com or cvasquez@sach13.com.