Bankruptcy

Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions

In Florida, your options are limited to use only the Florida bankruptcy exemptions as specified under the state laws; you cannot use the federal list of exemptions instead of the state-specific exemptions. However, you are allowed to use federal supplemental exemptions in addition to the state-specific exemptions. It is important to note that unlike many other states, the state of Florida does not have any provision for double exemption limit for married couples who file their bankruptcy petition jointly. Besides that, you can qualify for certain types of exemptions only if you are head of your family.

Wildcard

Married couple who jointly file bankruptcy petition can get up to $2000 of personal property. For single individuals, the maximum limit is $1000 only.

Wages

All types of wages, whether paid or unpaid, are exemptible under Florida bankruptcy exemptions. The maximum limit in this category is $500 per week for a maximum period of six months. But, it is important to note that this particular exemption is available only to the head of the family.

Tools Of Trade

Florida is one of those few states that does not allow any types of exemptions for tools of trade.

Public Benefits

You can get 100% exemptions if you are receiving any worker’s compensation, veteran’s benefits, unemployed compensation benefits, and public assistance. Crime victims’ compensation is also exemptible in full provided any of the dischargeable debts that you owe were not used or are not being used for the treatment of injuries occurred during the crime.

Personal Property

100% Florida bankruptcy exemptions are allowed for certain personal properties that include deposits for funeral contract (pre-need), health aids, federal income tax credit/ refund, deposits into hurricane savings account (prepaid), deposits into medical savings account (prepaid), and the deposits into trust for college education (prepaid).

Pension Benefits

Major pension benefits are fully exemptible as per the Florida bankruptcy laws. The debtor can get 100% exemptions for teacher pensions, ERISA-qualified benefits, Roth IRAs, IRAs, police officer pensions, firefighter pensions, county employee and county officers pensions, state employee and state officer pensions, and federal pension exemptions.

Miscellaneous

Under the miscellaneous category, you get 100% Florida bankruptcy exemptions for any compensation you are receiving injuries while working in hazardous occupations. If you are receiving alimony payments or child support payments, you can get the same exempted up to an amount of money that is reasonable and necessary for support. Here, it is important to note that it is entirely up to the bankruptcy trustee to decide what is reasonable and necessary. However, if you are not satisfied with his/her decision in this regard, you have the legal right to file an appeal ion the court against it.

Insurance

Fraternal benefit society payments, Illness and disability benefits, cash surrender value in a Life insurance policy, and annuity proceeds (excluding lottery winnings). Death benefits are also exemptible in full provided the payments are not made to deceased’s estate but to a specific beneficiary.

Homestead

Debtors have the right to file a homestead declaration. As per the state laws, there is no maximum limit on how much equity is exemptible in homestead properties that may include modular home or a mobile home or any other residential property. However, area-wise, you can exempt up to half acre in a municipality and sixty acres in other properties.

Always remember, not bankruptcy cases are treated in the same fashion. The court may order some specific provisions depending upon the factors involved in your case. You are recommended to consult a Florida bankruptcy attorney to find out how you can make the best use of the Florida bankruptcy exemptions.


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One Response to “Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions”

  1. macc says:

    Very well defined. If you are going to be declared as bankrupt in the state of Florida and you have filed the bankruptcy petition jointly as a married couple very sorry to say that you are not eligible for double exemption limit. Florida does not have such type of option; you can use Federal supplemental exemptions with state specific exemptions. Florida also does not give the exemptions under the category of tools of trade. Married couple can get the exemption in property under wild card category. Exemptions can be given in full if you are taking any type of compensations like workers compensation, crime victims compensations are exempted 100% exempted prepaid under this category. Pension benefits are also 100% exemptible. Alimony, compensation if you getting can be exempted up to a specific limit will be decided by the bankruptcy trusty insurance policies and other benefits are also exemptible to the maximum limit. Under this category the exemption can be taken according to the law. It is my suggestion if u r resident of Florida, you should follow and read the above mentioned guidelines.

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