Debtors’ interrogatories are questions to be answered by the debtor regarding his assets, jobs, and personal holdings. These interrogatories will address specifically and completely all information that can be used by the creditor to collect monies owed. Information required will include: all real estate owned, all bank accounts, both checking and savings; information about businesses if you are self employed; when your utilities are paid; the amount of your deposits and when they must be paid to you; and whether you are expecting a tax refund or an inheritance in the near future.
The affidavit for debtors interrogatory is a form filed with written interrogatories in lieu of appearance at the interrogatory hearing which answers the same questions as would be heard.
The courts and judges view, very narrowly, the reasons why the affidavit and written interrogatories would be an acceptable alternative to attending the hearing.
First, if the debtor has a written statement submitted by his/her doctor stating that the debtor is medically unable to attend the hearing. The debtor’s incarceration will excuse him/her from the hearing. Lastly, the debtor is overseas in the military.
Failure to appear for the interrogatories, unless excused, will result in a citation for contempt of court.
The written interrogatories have caused some concern for the courts which have struggled with the issue of debtor identity requirements. Because the affidavit is required to be notarized, the courts have decided that the interrogatories, too, must be notarized by the same notary who will require proper ID and review all social security documentation.
Filing an affidavit when the court allows absence from the hearing requires certain documents to be presented for proper identification:
In addition, you must provide proof of social security number which may include:
Once you have prepared the affidavit and completed the interrogatories, they must be filed with the clerk of courts. Be sure everything has been properly notarized and the answers to the interrogatories are true as you could be cited for contempt of court and required to pay a fine or do some jail time.
Remember you generally have 10 days to complete and file the affidavit and interrogatories.
While you are not required to have an attorney at an interrogatory hearing or for the filing of an affidavit or answering the debtors interrogatories, you certainly may choose to have a debt settlement or bankruptcy lawyer assist or represent you.