Bankruptcy

Virginia Bankruptcy Exemptions

The provisions for Virginia bankruptcy exemptions do not allow you to replace the same with the federal set of exemptions. Your options are limited to using the state-specified exemptions only if you are getting bankrupt under chapter 7 of the bankruptcy code in the state of Virginia.

Wildcard

If you have not used the 100% of homestead exemption limit, you can use the unused portion to exempt any personal property of your choice. Besides that, Virginia bankruptcy laws also specify that if a debtor is a disabled veteran, he/she is allowed to exempt an additional up to $2000 for any property in the wildcard category.

Wages

The laws regarding Virginia bankruptcy exemptions allow you to exempt either forty times of the minimum hourly wages as per federal standard or a minimum 3/4th of the weekly wages, whichever is higher. However, those debtors who have very low monthly income can qualify for a much higher exemption limit also as per court order.

Tools of trade

In this category, the exemptions can be availed in the following manner.

- Full exemptions for the uniforms, equipment and arms for a military member
- Framers can keep one drag, harvest cradle; two plows and wedges; and one wagon or cart but the maximum value in aggregate total must not exceed $1000. Framers are also allowed to keep one tractor up to $3000 in equity value and up to two mules or horses with gear.
- In general, debtors can exempt motor vehicles, instruments, books and other tools that are needed for a trade – the maximum limit is $1000 in aggregate total.

Public Benefits

You can avail Virginia bankruptcy exemptions in full for the following types of public benefits.

- Worker’s compensation benefits
- Aid to disabled, aged, and blind
- General relief benefits
- Unemployment compensation benefits
- Crime victim’s compensation benefits
- Payments to tobacco farmers

Personal Property

Various types of personal properties are exemptible in the following manner.

- 100% of claim and recovery for personal injury
- Up to $2,000 in motor vehicle
- 100% of medically prescribed health aids
- All Pets
- Up to $5,000 in household furnishings
- Up to $1,000 in clothing
- Up to $5,000 in Pre-need funeral contract
- 100% of Burial plot
- Up to $5,000 in aggregate total in Heirlooms and family portraits
- All of wedding and engagement rings
- One family Bible
- All of contracts for prepaid tuition

Pensions

Virginia bankruptcy exemptions can be availed in full for the following types of pensions.

- county, town, and city employee pensions
- Judge pensions
- State police officer pensions
- State employee pensions
- Federal pension exemptions

Retirement Savings Accounts

You can exempt up to $25,000 in Benefits qualified under ERISA.

Miscellaneous

You can all of those assets and properties that you are using in a business partnership where you are one of the partners.

Insurance

100% exemptions are available for the following types of insurance benefits also.

- Government officials can exempt group accident or life insurance benefits
- Benefits from a fraternal benefit society
- Burial society benefits
- Cooperative life insurance benefits
- Industrial benefits for illness
- Accident or sickness benefits
- Group life insurance proceeds/ policy
- Life insurance proceeds

Homestead

The following provisions apply when it comes to Virginia bankruptcy exemptions for homestead properties.

- If the owner is deceased, the surviving spouse can exempt up to $15000. If there is no surviving spouse, minor children can get up to $15000 of equity value in that property exempted under the Virginia bankruptcy laws.
- In order to be eligible for the exemptions in the homestead category, it is legally mandatory for the debtor to file homestead declaration before bankruptcy filing.
- Up to $5,000 from the unused portion of homestead exemptions can be used to exempt any other personal property of your choice
- Up to $5,000 can be exempted in the funds, profits and rents from sale of exempt homestead property
- The maximum homestead exemption limit is $5000. Besides that, the debtor can also exempt an additional $500 for every family member who is dependent on the debtor.

It is however very important for you to keep in mind that the exact details of the Virginia bankruptcy exemptions that might be applicable in your case will depend on an array of factors. Therefore, it is always better to discuss your case with a qualified and experienced Virginia bankruptcy attorney in order to get a more accurate evaluation.


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