Bankruptcy Exemptions – What Property Can I Keep?

If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the theory of a Chapter 7 is that you may be required to liquidate some assets to repay a portion of your debts. However, because bankruptcy is intended to provide a "fresh start" most common property is protected by the bankruptcy code. These protections ensure a fair lifestyle free from undue hardships after bankruptcy is over. The property that is protected varies from state to state. Generally, when married spouses file a joint bankruptcy, the amount of protected property doubles.

If you would like more information about how bankruptcy exemptions in Kentucky and Indiana will impact your bankruptcy case, call the Law Office of Allan E. Dunaway, PLC, at 502-785-1005 to schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney.

General Chapter 7 Exemption Information

When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the following property is generally protected to some degree in most states:

  • Your primary home
  • Your primary vehicle
  • Furniture
  • Clothing
  • Household appliances
  • Jewelry
  • Workers' compensation
  • Pension
  • Tools of the trade
  • Alimony and child support
  • Insurance benefits

The amount of each asset that you are allowed to keep depends upon the laws of the state in which you file for bankruptcy. Many filers do not forfeit any assets at all.

State-Specific Exemptions

Kentucky allows bankruptcy filers to take advantage of the "federal exemptions" within the Bankruptcy Code. Under Kentucky's state exemptions (in effect in bankruptcy cases filed in Kentucky prior to June, 2005), individuals could only retain up to $5,000 in equity of their primary residence, but under the federal protections that amount is now in excess of $22,000. The federal exemptions have specific protection for vehicles, household goods, personal injury damages, jewelry and many other categories of assets.

Indiana does not follow the federal exemptions, and only allows filers to retain about $19,000 in equity of their primary residence. Personal property is protected up to just under $10,000, and cash (or cash equivalent such as a bank account) has a nominal protection of about $400.

While there are too many detailed exemptions to list here, you can discuss the full range of exemptions with us during your free initial consultation.

Contact Us For Experienced Debt Relief Advice

If you are considering bankruptcy, you deserve to work with a lawyer who is dedicated to solving your financial concerns and has the experience to guide you through the process. Call the Law Office of Allan E. Dunaway, PLC, at 502-785-1005 to discuss how you can maximize the state and national exemptions to your benefit. You can also contact our offices online. We can meet with you at either our Louisville, Kentucky, or Jeffersonville, Indiana, offices.

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