Filing any type of bankruptcy will require you to attend a 341 meeting – often referred to as the meeting of creditors, though creditors rarely make an appearance.  If you filed a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the trustee administering your case will conduct the hearing. If you file a Chapter 11, the U.S. Trustee, or at least one of her staff attorneys, will be conducting the hearing.  To prove that you are who you say you are, the U.S. Trustee requires two forms of identification, one of which is a government issued paper with your social security card on it. Unfortunately, that little wallet sized card is often misplaced or lost prior to the hearing, so in a pinch, a W-2 or a pay stub from your employer will work, though a self-prepared tax return will not, as that was not issued from a third-party.

The best option is to always have a copy of your social security card with you.  I’ve lost mine before. When I wanted to replace it, I drove down to the nearest social security office in Atlanta and fill out the appropriate paperwork.  I had to stand in line for about 20 minutes, but the whole process took about an hour.  I received a new card in the mail within 10 days. Be sure to bring your driver’s license or passport with you.  Again, if you are in a pinch, a W-2 will typically satisfy most trustees identification requirements.