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My 341 Experience (Manchester, NH)

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  • My 341 Experience (Manchester, NH)

    I had my 341 meeting this morning and after many sleepless nights, I felt really comforted and reassured last night by reading other's stories on here, so I wanted to come back and share my own story in the hope that it might help someone else. It seems that each state or county does things a bit differently, so I wanted to share how things went in Manchester, New Hampshire.

    To start, I suffer from severe anxiety and used to have panic attacks regularly, so to say I was afraid of the 341 is an understatement. My biggest fears were about stupid little unknowns - would I be able to figure out where to go, how would the room be set up, how many people would be there watching, what kind of unforeseen questions would the Trustee ask, would I panic and not answer his questions correctly, etc. Basically all ridiculous fears.

    The reality is that the way they set things up here is really well organized and when you get there, the docket is posted outside the room, which will give you a sense of when it will be your turn. The room is medium sized and has several rows of chairs facing away from the door (you don't need to be wary of walking in or out, no one will notice or care), and the Trustee's desk is at the head of the room. There's a table in front of his desk where you'll sit with your lawyer. I arrived about a half an hour before my 9am time and the room wasn't even open yet, so I waited outside with two other filers. One of my fears was feeling judged by other people there, but if anything, there was actually a feeling of comradery. After all, everyone there is going through something similar and few people could be more understanding of your situation. Chatting briefly with the other filers made me feel so much more comfortable, knowing that these were the people who'd be listening to my meeting.

    My lawyer got there pretty early and reviewed what would happen with me, so that was helpful. I saw that other people's lawyers didn't show up until we were all in the meeting room already. I ended up going 4th out of 6 meetings for my time slot, and the Trustee asked me very few questions. I was so surprised when it was over so quickly, I think he asked me half as many questions as the people who went before me. My case is pretty straightforward, but I was really embarrassed about my spending in the year or two leading up to the bankruptcy because I had foolishly spent a ton of personal credit trying to get my small business up and running, and it ultimately was a huge failure and never became profitable. I also had nothing to show for all the money spent, so I didn't know if that would matter or there would be questions about any of it. All of the questions were just to confirm what was on my paperwork, nothing about anything else or even any questions to verify specific numbers (I didn't know if I'd need to know my exact current income or value of any property or something). The Trustee was an older guy, very respectful and polite and I felt completely comfortable and respected when he was questioning me. It was also really nice that at that point there were only two other people and their lawyers in the room. Not a single creditor showed up for any of the meetings.

    If I could offer any advice to a worried filer about the 341 in Manchester, it would be definitely go early so you don't have to stress about being late. You can sit in the back of the room and watch everything going down and get a feel for the Trustee and his questions. Parking isn't great in that area, so being early is the way to go. If you're afraid of unforeseen questions - don't be! If there is something that could come up, your lawyer will already know about it and will talk to you first. Also, don't worry about anyone judging you, no one cares about your situation and if anything, they will feel sympathetic. Just review your schedules the night before, go early, get up there and be honest, answer concisely, and you will be done before you know it. And no matter what happens, once it's over you'll feel amazing. Good luck!!


  • #2
    Thank you for sharing your experience with everyone. It never fails that all of us who were scared/nervous/anxious before the 341 find it wasn't that bad at all.
    Good luck going forward!
    Filed Chapter 13 - 07/20/12
    Discharged 8/2/16

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    • #3
      Welcome to BKforum, moody! Thank you for taking the time to write about your experience. You give excellent advice for those who are worried about their own 341 meetings.
      LadyInTheRed is in the black!
      Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
      $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!

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