Changes to NY Bankruptcy Exemptions

On December 24, 2010, in Bankruptcy, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Governor David A. Paterson has signed into law S.7034-A/A.8735-A, which will increase the amount of New York’s bankruptcy exemptions and allow NY debtors to choose  the federal (see Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions & NY) or the new New York state exemptions.

The following is a summary of the changes:

  • Increases the homestead exemption under Section 5206 of the CPLR from $50,000 to: $150,000 for the counties of Kings, New York, Queens, Bronx, Richmond, Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland, Westchester, and Putnam; $125,000 for the counties of Dutchess, Albany, Columbia, Orange, Saratoga, and Ulster; $75,000 for the remaining counties in the state;
  • Increases motor vehicle exemption under section 282 of the Debtor and Creditor Law from $2,400 to $4,000  for one motor vehicle. If such vehicle is equipped for use by a disabled person, the exemption amount is $10,000 in bankruptcy;
  • Increases the amount of the aggregate individual bankruptcy exemption for certain annuities and personal property under section 283 of the debtor and creditor law from $5,000 to $10,000;
  • Adds a new section 285 to the Debtor and Creditor Law permitting debtors to choose either the current federal exemptions or the new New York exemptions;
  • Increase the exemption for books and religious texts from $50 to $500;
  • Increases the domestic animals and food exemption from $450 to $1,000;
  • Increases one watch from $35 to $1,000 and adds jewelry and art to this category;
  • Increases the tools of trade exemption from $600 to $3,000;
  • Adds a wildcard exemption, if no homestead exemption is claimed,  of $1,000 for personal property, bank account, or cash;
  • Provides for the exemption of one computer and associated equipment, and one cell phone;
  • Exempt up to $6000 cash if no homestead exemption taken and aggregate individual bankruptcy exemption totals $5000 or less.

The entire bill can be found here or here .

We proudly assist residents of Long Island (Nassau county, Suffolk county) and New York City (Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan) with their bankruptcy filings.  

Call (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE  consultation with a bankruptcy attorney!

New NY Bankruptcy Exemptions

On December 23, 2010, in Bankruptcy, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Governor Paterson has signed into law a bill that will increase many of New York’s bankruptcy exemptions;  including the motor vehicle and homestead exemptions.  Additionally, New Yorkers will now also be allowed to choose between using the federal or state exemptions.

A summary of the changes can be found here.

The entire bill can be found here.

The following is a Press Release issued by the Governor’s office.

Governor David A. Paterson today announced he has signed into law S.7034-A/A.8735-A, which will increase the amount of exemptions in bankruptcy proceedings and money judgments and provide a choice between State and Federal exemptions. The Governor also announced that he has vetoed two bills.

“During this time of economic crisis, it is our responsibility as public servants to protect those who are struggling the most,” Governor Paterson said. “A reconsideration of the current exemptions, which in some cases have not been changed in decades, is particularly warranted when an increasing number of individuals find themselves in dire financial condition. Though this is not a perfect bill, the benefits far outweigh its concerns. I understand from legislators and advocacy groups that have supported this bill that they are fully committed to addressing the concerns raised by New York City and others, and I urge the Legislature to do so in the coming year. I’d like to thank Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein for her commitment to passing a chapter amendment to address those concerns.”

This bill would provide a much-needed update to the exemptions law in New York as many provisions of State’s exemptions law are antiquated or have not been amended since the 1980’s. The purpose of such exemptions is to permit debtors in bankruptcy to retain a modest amount of personal property and equity in their homes so that they can continue to maintain their lives, and to protect them from becoming homeless, unemployed, or otherwise dependent on the State.

Included in this legislation is a new exemption from the satisfaction of a money judgment for a vehicle not exceeding $4,000 above the debtor’s liens and encumbrances ($10,000 for a vehicle equipped for use by a disabled person) and a raise of the bankruptcy exemption accordingly. This bill would also increase the homestead exemption from $50,000 to either $75,000, $125,000 or $250,000 depending upon the county of residence.

We proudly assist residents of Long Island (Nassau county, Suffolk county) and New York City (Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan) with their bankruptcy filings.  

Call (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE  consultation with a bankruptcy attorney!

Will I Lose My House or Car If I File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

On July 15, 2010, in Bankruptcy, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Will I lose my home or car if I file for chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Usually not.

In most cases you will not lose your home or car during your bankruptcy case as long as you can exempt the equity, if any exists, in your home or car. In New York, a person is currently allowed a fifty thousand dollar ($50,000.00) homestead exemption and a twenty-four hundred dollar ($2,400.00) motor vehicle exemption. If the property is exempt it may not be taken by the trustee.

However, bankruptcy does not automatically make a valid lien, mortgage or other security interest go away.  Therefore, if you don’t make your payments on that debt, the creditor may be able to take and sell your home or car, during or after the bankruptcy case. Technically, a creditor can repossess your car even if your  payments are current. The law requires you to redeem, surrender or reaffirm the vehicle (your bankruptcy attorney should advise you about this issue).

As always, The Long Island Bankruptcy Law Firm of VAUGHN & WEBER, PLLC is here to assist you.  We are conveniently located in the heart of Nassau County, Long Island, at 217 Willis Avenue in Mineola, NY 11501.  Contact us at (516) 858-2620 to arrange a consultation with a bankruptcy Attorney.

Please visit our Bankruptcy category to learn more about filing bankruptcy.

Remember:  The law often changes, and each case is different. The above is meant to give you general information, and not to give you specific legal advice.

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation. This website is Attorney Advertising. It does not form an attorney-client relationship. We are a debt relief agency and a law firm that helps people file for bankruptcy relief under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code – Title 11. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Proudly assisting residents of Long Island, Nassau county, Suffolk county, New York City, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan