• bankruptcy exemptions

Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions

Most persons filing for bankruptcy in Florida are allowed to use the Florida exemptions.  In some cases, the exemptions of another state or the federal exemptions must be used.

Exempt property is property that is not considered part of the bankruptcy estate. In a chapter 7 bankruptcy case, exempt property is taken out of the “bankruptcy estate” and may not be liquidated by a chapter 7 trustee to pay creditors.

In a chapter 13 bankruptcy case, the determination of what property is exempt is also important, as the amount required to be paid to unsecured creditors is determined, in part, on the value of the debtor’s property that is not exempt.

Homestead

The Florida Constitution provides for a very generous homestead exemption. A homestead is exempt to the extent of a half acre is located within a municipality and not more than 160 acres if located outside a municipality.  For most person, their entire homestead is exempt.

Personal Property

Florida provides for a $1,000 exemption for personal property. Where a person does not claim or receive the benefits of a homestead exemption, an additional $4,000 exemption of personal property is allowed.

Motor Vehicles

Florida provides an exemption of $1,000 in value for motor vehicles. A motor vehicle includes a car, truck, and motorcycle.

Other Exempt Property

Other property that is generally exempt includes:

  • pension plan, IRAs, and other retirement benefits
  • social security benefits
  • life insurance policies
  • annuities
  • workers compensation claims
  • earned income credit