Will I Have To Give Up My Computer If I File For Bankruptcy?
There are many personal possessions that we rely on everyday for various reasons, including our phones, automobiles, and computers. If you are thinking about filing for personal bankruptcy, you are likely wondering if you will need to give up important assets that you need on a day-to-day basis. Depending upon the type of bankruptcy you are planning to file for, you may not need to give up any possessions. And even if you are required to relinquish assets for a liquidation bankruptcy, you will be able to keep a range of property through Florida’s bankruptcy exemptions.
Are you concerned that you will need to give up your computer if you file for consumer bankruptcy? Consider the following information from our West Palm Beach personal bankruptcy attorneys.
What Type of Bankruptcy Are You Filing For?
First, before you begin to worry about having to give up your computer, what type of bankruptcy are you filing for? If you are filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you should know that your assets will not be liquidated in order to repay creditors. You will only need to consider which assets are exempt, and how you can exempt your computer, if you are filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Tools of the Trade Exemption Does Not Exist Under Florida Law
One common way people exempt computers in Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases is through the “tools of the trade” exemption. Unfortunately, Florida bankruptcy filers cannot rely on a “tools of the trade” exemption to keep their computer.
Many states have an exemption that is known as a “tools of the trade” exemption, and federal bankruptcy exemptions include a “tools of the trade” exemption. In other states, debtors who file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be able to exempt their computer as a tool of the trade if they rely on their computer for work. However, the Florida Statutes do not contain a “tools of the trade” exemption. Further, debtors in Florida cannot use the federal bankruptcy exemptions.
Personal Property and Wildcard Exemptions
Even though there is no “tools of the trade” exemption available to Florida residents who are filing for bankruptcy, there are a couple of options for keeping your computer. First, you can use the personal property exemption of up to $1,000.
Or, if you do not use the homestead exemption to exempt equity in your house, you will have a wildcard exemption of up to $4,000. With the wildcard exemption, you can exempt any property of your choosing up to $4,000 in value.
Contact a Bankruptcy Attorney in West Palm Beach Today
When you are planning to file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, or you have questions about exemptions that can allow you to keep certain property in your liquidation bankruptcy, you should get in touch with a lawyer who can help. Do not hesitate to contact one of the experienced West Palm Beach personal bankruptcy lawyers at Kelley, Fulton, Kaplan & Eller to learn more about how exemptions work in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies for consumers.