Brett N. Rodgers

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Monday-Friday 8:00-4:30

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General Questions

What is Chapter 13?
Chapter 13 is a consumer reorganization Chapter of the Bankruptcy Code. Chapter 13 is designed for individuals with regular income who are unable to pay their debts as they become due. Chapter 13 is commonly utilized by individuals who have missed mortgage payments, owe non-dischargeable taxes or child support debts, want to utilize lien stripping provisions of the Bankruptcy Code, or would be unable to utilize Chapter 7 without losing some of their non-exempt assets. 

Who qualifies for Chapter 13?
An individual may qualify so long as their unsecured debts are less than $383,175.00 and their secured debts are less than $1,149,525.00. These amounts are adjusted periodically to reflect changes in the consumer price index. 

What is the difference between Chapter 13 and Chapter 11?
Chapter 11 is designed primarily for the reorganization of a business but is also available to consumer debtors. Its provisions are quite complicated, and any decision by an individual to file a Chapter 11 petition should be reviewed with an attorney.

What is the difference between Chapter 13 and Chapter 7?
Chapter 7 is a liquidation designed for debtors in financial difficulty who do not have the ability to pay their existing debts. Any decision to file a Chapter 7 petition should be reviewed with an attorney.

What is the difference between Chapter 13 and Chapter 12?
Chapter 12 is designed to permit family farmers to repay their debts over a period of time from future earnings and is in many ways similar to Chapter 13. The eligibility requirements are restrictive, limiting it's use to those who income arises primarily from a family-owned farm.

How often does the Trustee distribute funds in a case?
Once per month, the first full week of the month, the Trustee disburses funds in all open cases.

Debtor Questions

Who should I contact with questions?
You should always contact your attorney first with any questions. Your attorney will have access to our resources and can answer all questions for you. If they are not able to answer your question, they can contact us and return your call.

How do I access information about my case?

Go to and click on the instructions for debtors. The website will lead you step by step on how to set-up your login and password for access to your case. 

What is a 341 Meeting and where do I go?
A 341 Meeting is a hearing with the Trustee which a Debtor attends with his/her attorney and will testify under oath as to the contents and validity of the Plan and Schedules. Debtors may be asked to provide documents such as tax returns, titles of vehicles, Drivers License, Social Security Cards; etc. A list of items needed is provided at the time your meeting is scheduled. Creditors are welcome to attend and ask questions on the record. The geographical location of your residence will determine the location of your 341 Meeting. The 3 locations for 341 hearing include Grand Rapids, Traverse City and Kalamazoo. Generally,  If you live in or near the Grand Rapids area, your 341 Meeting will take place at the Ledyard Building, Second Floor, 125 Ottawa NW, Suite 202R, Grand Rapids MI 49503. Generally, If you live in or near the Traverse City area your 341 Meeting will take place at Logan Place West, 3249 Racquet Club Drive, Traverse City, MI 49684. Generally, If you live in or near the Kalamazoo area your 341 Meeting will take place at the Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse, 410 West Michigan Avenue, Room 111, Kalamazoo, MI 49007. You will recieve a notice with the specific location, date and time from the Bankruptcy Court. 

What if my income changes?
You should contact your attorney.

What if I want to buy or sell an asset?
You should contact your attorney with regards to buying or selling an asset. The attorney will need to file appropriate documents to obtain Trustee approval.

Are creditors allowed to call me? 
All the creditors listed in your Chapter 13 Schedules are under an automatic restraining order which prohibits them from contacting you in any way. If you continue to get notices from your creditors after your case has been confirmed send them to your attorney. Delinquent notices need not cause a great concern, but if you get a more personal, direct contact from a creditor, such as a telephone call, a personal letter, a summons, or a visit in person, you should immediately inform them that you are under Chapter 13 and give them your attorney's name, address and your case number. Under no circumstances should you discuss the debt with them in any manner. Be sure to tell your lawyer the name of the person who contacted you. Your lawyer will want to follow up on such a call and the name of the person calling you is very important.

When is my first plan payment due?
This first payment is due within thirty (30) days of the petition being filed. If your case was converted from Chapter 7 to Chapter 13, your first payment will be due within thirty (30) days of the order converting you case. 

May I bring my payment to the Trustee's office?
No. The Trustee is not permitted to accept Debtor payments at the office. They must be sent to the payment address, which appears on the Home Page. This is a lock box from which payments are directly picked up by the bank for deposit in the Trustee's account.

Am I required to send in copies of my tax returns? 

Yes. You must provide copies of your last 1 to 2 years of tax returns to the Trustee's office once your case is filed. After your case is filed you will need to provide our office a copy of your tax return on a yearly basis as advised by your attorney. Failure to do so will result in a delay of closing your case and could result in a motion to have your case dismissed. Mail copies of your redacted tax returns to our office address or email them to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Please see the next question for where to mail your tax refunds to.

Do I have to pay in my income tax refunds?
Typically, there is a provision in all Chapter 13's paying less than 100% to unsecured creditors that requires Debtor(s) to devote their disposable income (inclusive of all tax refunds) into the plan for the ACP (listed in your plan). A plan may require all or part of the refund be paid in, based on Debtor(s) circumstances. For more specifics, Debtor(s) should discuss this plan provision carefully with their attorney. Mail your tax refunds to our payment address. Please do not mail tax refunds to our office address as our office cannot accept payments.

What do I do if I need to keep my tax refund?

You should contact your attorney. Your attorney should have the correct forms to complete and send to our office to request that you keep your tax refund.

Creditor Questions

Where do Creditors send any return of funds overpaid on claims?
Brett N. Rodgers Chapter 13 Trustee
Attn: Return Payment Department
99 Monroe Ave NW, Suite 601
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

What is the quickest way for Creditors to get up to date information on a case or cases?
Creditors can access case information through the website. Please go to our Creditor page and click on the Internet Access Agreement. Fill out the agreement and either fax or mail it back to our office. You will then receive an e-mail acknowledgment and instructions of how to access case information.