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What types of property can someone keep in a bankruptcy?

On Behalf of | Nov 8, 2019 | Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Unlike most states, Indiana does not follow federal bankruptcy exemptions. Instead, everyone must follow their state exemptions. Couples filing together may even receive a bonus on their exemption amounts.

NOLO provides a detailed list of the state’s bankruptcy exemptions. The state does not exempt motor vehicles, but it does provide homeowners with up to $19,300 for their residence. Property held in certain partnerships may be exempt as well as pensions for public employees, police and firefighters as well as tax-exempt retirement plans.

Most life insurance policies, fraternal benefit society benefits, unemployment benefits and workers’ compensation benefits are exempt. Some personal property is exempt as well including earned income tax credit, a spendthrift trust, up to $400 of intangible property, qualified retirement plan interest, military uniforms and equipment, health savings accounts and education savings accounts.

Indiana Code 34-55-10-2 lists the limitations on bankruptcy limitations. The debtor’s family or personal residence may be exempt up to $15,000 and may be used for both debtors when couples file. Debtors may keep up to $300 of that kept in cash and deposit accounts excluding the income and debts owed.

Beyond the personal residence, a debtor may keep a stake up to $8,000 in other tangible property such as real estate. In addition to the federal earned income tax credit, debtors may keep their interest in the state’s earned income tax credit as listed in IC 6-3.1-21-6. For tenants, they can remain in the home even if the landlord files bankruptcy on the property.

These are by no means the full detailed list of the property a debtor may be able to keep when filing bankruptcy. The type of bankruptcy filed greatly impacts what a debtor keeps.

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