I’m here to talk to you today about maintaining property through the process of filing bankruptcy.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is often called a straight bankruptcy or liquidation bankruptcy and that term liquidation bankruptcy tends to frighten people they believe that if it filed bankruptcy they’re going to lose property that they have. While that may be true in very limited circumstances it’s not true in every case. The Bankruptcy Code has set limitations for property that you can claim as exempt that’s the property that you keep even though you’re filing chapter 7 bankruptcy and the trustee and your creditors cannot touch it, its hands off. Those limitation amounts just so you know are adjusted for the rate of inflation so it sounds like I’m making these numbers up but these are accurate as of the date of the filming of this video.
Personal residence, $21,625.00, Household goods and furnishings–$11, 525.00
Same amount applicable to clothing, books and collections, CD’s, DVD’s and other things that you own, knickknacks, figurines, art. Other miscellaneous property you’re entitled to another #11, 525 this will cover any sort of firearms or sporting equipment or other type of property that you have that doesn’t fall into these other broad categories.
Vehicles up to $3,450 worth of equity in a vehicle. Now if your vehicle’s worth more than that but you’re making payments on it you probably don’t have that much equity in the vehicle so generally we can protect the vehicle if that’s what you want to do. We talk about keeping vehicles in bankruptcy in another video that you should watch a few questions about that. Also with jewelry it’s a little over $1400. In addition to these exemptions you also have a general exemption or a wild-card exemption that will afford you another $1,150 to protect anything that you want. If you’re not using all of the exemption that you have for the residents, if you don’t have$ 21,000 worth of equity then you can use up to $10,825 of the unused equity to protect anything else that you want. This is usually used to protect a boat or a motorcycle in many cases.