Don’t Lose Everything: Use Bankruptcy Exemptions

What are included in the Bankruptcy Estate?

business attorney riverside ca

When you file for bankruptcy, your bankruptcy attorney will ask you to list all the property you own without exception.  If you don’t list all your properties, the trustee will be able to sell it and distribute its proceeds to your creditors. As your property becomes now part of the bankruptcy “estate”, the bankruptcy trustee appointed by the court holds the property on behalf of your creditors.  However, it doesn’t mean that you lose all your property. Bankruptcy law allows you to “exempt” those you need to maintain like home, household furnishings, clothing, and car. Remember that exemptions are not automatic. You may check with bankruptcy attorney riverside the exemption laws where you are resident as each state decides the assets exempted in bankruptcy. 


Your state will most likely have an allowance for the following types of exemptions:

  • real estate (such as a residence, building, or land)
  • vehicles (cars, vans, trucks, tractors, sport utility vehicles, motorcycles, watercraft, aircraft, motor homes, ATVs, and the like)
  • personal and household items (such as furnishings, electronics, collectibles, sports equipment, garden tools, firearms, clothes, kitchenware, towels, bedding, and jewelry)
  • financial assets (bank, stock, and retirement account balances, business interests, legal claims, tax returns, and other monetary interests)
  • business-related property (any property associated with a business, such as a restaurant oven or merchandise)
  • tools of the trade (a reasonable amount for tools you need for your job)
  • most retirement accounts
  • farm- and commercial fishing-related property, and
  • any other assets you own.

If you are not sure whether you will be able to keep your property, consult with bankruptcy attorney riverside ca who can explain the exemption rules and determine how much property you will be entitled to keep in bankruptcy.