This is THE biggest question going through most peoples’ minds when considering bankruptcy as a solution to unmanageable debt. No one wants to part with their stuff, be left homeless or without transportation. The thought of losing assets or property is enough to keep many people from pursing bankruptcy, even if it would help them out in the long run.
Though the notion of asset loss may seem daunting to a debtor. The bankruptcy process is fairly clear on defining property and assets and what is kept. Here are a few general points on property / asset loss to keep in mind as you consider filing for bankruptcy:
- Losing assets is a feature of chapter 7 bankruptcy, not chapter 13 bankruptcy.
- Bankruptcy has two classes of property: Real Property and Personal Property
- Real Property is real estate of various types, including: house, land, condo, commercial building, deeded time share, etc.
- Personal Property is anything and everything that is not Real Property and includes vehicles, furniture, bank accounts, and retirement accounts, etc.
- Exemptions protect all or portion of equity in an asset from being seized in chapter 7 bankruptcy and exemptions vary by state
- Ownership plays a part in asset analysis
- Fair market value will determine help determine if the property is exempt
- If the net equity is less than the exemption amount, the asset is protected, if the net equity exceeds the exemption amount, the asset is at risk.
- Experience and expertise play a big roll in successfully helping a debtor keep property in a chapter 7 bankruptcy
Sound complicated? It is. When you meet with Jim Cossitt, he will personally apply the general rules to your situation and you will know what assets you can keep or not well in advance of any bankruptcy case. And if there are assets you might, lose, Doctor Cossitt has a variety of options for you to consider. Don’t sweat it or stress; just get experienced advice. And don’t try to figure this all out by yourself.
Jim Cossitt is one of Montana’s most skilled and respected bankruptcy experts and Montana’s only dual-board certified bankruptcy attorney — certified by the the American Board of Certification in both consumer and business bankruptcy law.
Our strength is in our core principles: experience, integrity and expertise. We treat all our clients with the respect they deserve and represent our clients as we ourselves would want to be represented. Contact us today for a consultation.