You may be on the verge of filing for bankruptcy in Florida or you know someone who is. Knowing your state’s bankruptcy exemptions is important for you before the filing process. Florida bankruptcy exemptions are just like any state, it has its own set of exemptions that may be used when filing for bankruptcy.
Exemptions verify what property you may keep when filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and how much you have to pay to certain creditors in Chapter 13 bankruptcy. In Florida, if a couple is married and files jointly then each spouse can claim the full amount of each exemption, this is called “doubling.”
Florida allows a complete exemption for one’s homestead property – up to one half acre in an incorporated municipality and up to 130 acres if the property is not in an incorporated municipality. While the Federal law respects this, there are exceptions.
In order to qualify for your state’s exemption, you must have made that state your permanent residence for at least two years. If less than two years but more than 91 days, you must use the exemptions of the state where you were domiciled for the better part of the 180 day period immediately prior to the two year period.
3 Bankruptcy Exemptions
- Social Security benefits, Unemployment Compensation, or Federal Government Employee’s pension payments that are needed for support and were received up to 3 months prior to filing for bankruptcy.
- Prepaid hurricane savings accounts, Prepaid medical savings account deposits, and Prepaid college education trust deposits.
- Alimony and Child Support
In order to determine what property you will be able to keep when applying for bankruptcy, start making a list of inventory for each piece of the property’s replacement value. Then compare these values to the state exemption. Do this to determine which allows you to keep the property that matters the most to you. A bankruptcy attorney can check review your list with you, in order to ensure you have listed all of the exemptions you are eligible for.
Before filing for bankruptcy in Florida, it is important that you do research. Hiring a bankruptcy attorney to answer any and all questions concerning bankruptcy exemptions will help you through the process. Know your exemptions before you begin the filing process, and the process will go much simpler for you.