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Chapter 7: unused exemptions

Winston-salem, NC |

What happens when you have personal property exemption amount left over. After I have used all of my exemptions I still have like $2,000 left over. What happens to that? I have nothing else to use it on.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Best answer

    If you have listed all of your property on your bankruptcy petition and have exempted it all then you should not lose any of those assets in your chapter 7. You would do nothing with the unused exemptions. You should feel lucky that you were able to exempt all of your personal property with some left over. If you didn't, then you run the risk of having the trustee take those assets from you to sell and pay off some of your creditors. This time of the year debtors need to take into consideration their tax refunds they have coming to them in a few months. Did you exempt any potential tax refund as well? If not then you should add the anticipated tax refund on schedule B and exempt $2,000 of it on schedule C.

    This answer is to be considered general advice and may not be the actual law in your jurisdiction. It also does not constitute an attorney-client relationship or privilege.


  2. The exemptions are there to protect up to a certain amount of property. If you don't have anything else to which the exemption applies, you simply don't use it. If, however, as the prior answering attorney mentioned, you have other property to work with - use it to protect contingent claims if there are any.

    Please note that I am not admitted to practice outside of the States of New York and New Jersey. Anything stated by me in this forum is for general informational purposes and is not intended to be taken as attempting to practice law in any juridiction in which I am not licensed. Further, the reading of these answers is merely for informational purposes only and does not create an attorney-client relationship absent the signing of a retainer agreement.


  3. Exemptions are not like cell phone minutes, you can't roll them over & get something for them. If the exemptions have protected 100% of your assets, just count your blessings.

    Hope this perspective helps!