What Can I Keep in Bankruptcy?

One of the most common fears about bankruptcy is that you will lose all of your property. This is not true. Rather than leave you destitute, the Bankruptcy Code allows you to keep certain assets to help you get a fresh financial start.

I am Cherry Hill, New Jersey bankruptcy lawyer Joel R. Spivack. I dedicate my entire practice to helping people seek debt relief through Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 filings. With more than 30 years of experience practicing exclusively in the area of bankruptcy law, I am in a strong position to help you determine what property you will be able to keep when you file bankruptcy.

What Assets Can I Keep When Filing Bankruptcy in New Jersey?

Certain property is considered exempt under the Bankruptcy Code, which means that the trustee cannot take it to pay your creditors. The following are examples of property that is exempt, to a limited extent, under federal bankruptcy laws:

  • Equity in your home
  • Equity in your car
  • Equity in tools you need to do your job
  • Equity in household goods and furnishings
  • Equity in jewelry
  • Equity in life insurance value
  • Assets kept in qualified retirement accounts such as pensions, 401(k) accounts and IRAs
  • Unlimited amounts of government-provided benefit payments

There are additional miscellaneous exemptions such as a wild card exemption you can apply to the property of your choice. If you don’t use the full homestead exemption for home equity, you can use the unused portion to protect other property.

Certain assets, such as collectible cars and second homes, are generally not protected. However, even when an asset is not protected, you still have a choice when you file bankruptcy. You can give up the asset or you can pay the trustee the liquidated value of the asset. The liquidated value is the amount the creditor would have received if the item was sold. The liquidated value is far less than the retail value.

If you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy and pay your debts off over time, you can keep all of your assets.

Schedule a Free Initial Consultation with a Cherry Hill Bankruptcy Attorney

To find out what property you can keep when you file bankruptcy, call me, Cherry Hill bankruptcy lawyer Joel Spivack. You can reach me by phone at 856-488-1200, toll free at via e-mail. My regular business hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and free parking is available.

To read more about bankruptcy frequently asked questions, click here.

We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.