Oklahoma Bankruptcy Exemptions
Your debts are mounting and the phone never stops. You want relief from the constant pressure of debt. You know bankruptcy is an option. However, you are worried about your property. However, if you are like many Oklahoman’s, your concern for your property is misplaced. Oklahoma bankruptcy exemptions provide protections that may protect every asset you own in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. This is how it works:
Chapter 7 Liquidation
You have likely read that a Chapter 7 is a liquidation. Consequently, you give up your property in exchange for a discharge of debts. The trustee then sells your property and makes payment to your unsecured creditors. While this is technically true, it is not the complete story. The only property you give up in a Chapter 7 case is your “non-exempt” property. If you are like many Oklahoman’s, most, if not all, of your property, is exempt! In addition to exemption protections, property that is secured by a lien or mortgage provides additional protection as the trustee would need to satisfy the lien from any sale proceeds.
Oklahoma Exemption Laws
Oklahoma exemption laws can be found in Title 31 of the Oklahoma Statutes as well as the Constitution. These laws protect the majority of property for most individual Oklahoman who have resided in the state for at least the past 2 years. (Residents living here a shorter time may need to use other exemptions.)
- Your Homestead: Is fully exempt, regardless of value, so long as: (a) under 25% is used for a business purpose; and (b) it is on an acre or less within the city, or 160 acres or less outside of a city. (If you purchased your home within 1215 days of filing bankruptcy, your exemption may be limited under federal law. Be sure and let us know if this applies to you). Please remember, if you are paying on a mortgage, that amount comes before your exemption is applied. This will normally benefit a debtor who recently purchased their home).
- Your Car: Each debtor is entitled to exempt one motor vehicle of up to $7,500.00 in value. Like your mortgage, this exemption applies over and above the amount of your loan. For example, if your vehicle is valued at $30,000.00 and your loan amount is $25,000.00, you have $5,000.00 in equity. You are entitled to exempt $7,500.00. Therefore, you car will be protected.
- Household Goods and Furnishings: No monetary limit.
- Clothing: up to $4,000.00 per debtor.
- Wedding and Anniversary rings: up to $3,000.00 per debtor.
- Health Aids: No monetary limit.
- Qualified Retirement Plans: No monetary limit.
- 75% of current earnings earned in the last 90 days.
- Your right to receive alimony, child support and separate maintenance payments to the extent reasonably necessary for support.
- Personal Injury or Worker’s Compensation Claim: $50,000.00
- An interest in an Oklahoma college savings plan.
- Any part of a tax refund which represents the earned income tax credit.
Also, if you have tool of trade, livestock or other animals, additional exemptions are available to you. We will be glad to discuss those with you.
With respect to the values above, it is also important to keep in mind that the values used are liquidation (wholesale) values. This provides additional protection for your assets.
We are here to help you. Together, we will discuss your assets and you will have the piece of mind of knowing exactly what is protected. Call us today.
(We are a debt relief agency and we help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.)