If you are looking into filing a bankruptcy, it's important for you to know about the protections that are available (or not available) to protect certain assets.
Disclosure of Assets
In all consumer bankruptcy cases, the debtor must disclose to the court all ownership interests in all assets. Typically, the debtor's list of assets will include such items as:
- real estate
- motor vehicles
- household goods
- retirement accounts
- tax refunds
- security deposits
- personal injury claims
Exemptions in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
In a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy case, if the value of these assets exceed the available exemption allowances, the debtor must be willing to give-up the assets. If the value of the assets, however, do not exceed the available exemption allowances, the debtor in a Chapter 7 case may keep the assets.
In a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy case, if the value of the assets exceed the available exemptions, the debtor can keep the assets--- because assets are protected in a Chapter 13 case. However, if the value of the assets exceed the applicable exemptions, the debtor is required to pay to the general unsecured creditors (through their plan), at a minimum, an amount that is equal to the value of all non-exempt assets.
Here is a list of the most common exemptions applied in Illinois bankruptcy cases:
- Illinois Homestead Exemption
- Illinois Wild Card Exemption
- Illinois Vehicle Exemption
- Illinois Pension Exemption
- Illinois Retirement Account Exemption
- Illinois Tools of the Trade Exemption
- Illinois Personal Injury Award Exemption
- Illinois Wage Exemption