There is this common misconception with regard to bankruptcy that, upon filing bankruptcy, there will be someone sent to your home to catalogue all of your belongings and report back to the Trustee their findings. This is not how it works at all. On the contrary, when you fill out your schedules you are charged with disclosing all your assets and all your creditors under penalty of perjury. In lay-man’s terms you are required to swear that you have listed everything—and I mean everything—that you own and everyone—and I mean everyone—that you owe money to on your schedules.
Nobody else but you knows exactly what belongings you have. Even if you tell your attorney that you have this item or that item, it is ultimately your responsibility to read over the schedules once prepared by your attorney to make sure they are complete and accurately reflect your assets and creditors. This is the whole reason trustees ask at the 341 Meeting of the Creditors if the debtors read and understood the documents filed in their case and whether or not they signed them.
Make no mistake, however, that trustees have ways of determining your property beyond what you report. Take your tax returns for instance. If there is rent income listed on your taxes this raises the question to the trustee just what property you might have that would bring in rent income. They can also look at your list of creditors. If you have listed some Jewelry store’s credit card on your list of creditors the trustee may be curious as to whether all jewelry that you have is listed in your assets list.
The moral of the story is that there is not someone that is hired to go out and monitor you to see what kind of car you are driving. If you own the car it should be listed. There won’t be someone knocking on your door asking you to open up your storage unit so he can take an inventory; you should have done that inventory and listed your assets. This is actually a very efficient way to handle bankruptcy cases because I like to think that, for the most part, people are honest. And if they are not, there is plenty of incentive to be given that the penalties for perjury can vary from denial of your discharge (never to be able to file on those particular debts again) to criminal charges and fines. So don’t try to put one past the trustee or the bankruptcy court when filling out your schedules because it is your signature that goes on the bottom.