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STATE OF FLORIDA: Chapter-7 Bankruptcy, Re: Auto and Asset Exemptions l

Sorrento, FL |
Filed under: Bankruptcy

I've heard that the exemption for the value of an auto has been raised from the
longstanding amount of $1,000. If so, what is the current limit?

Also, I've heard that the exemption for the value of other assets (not including auto)
is now $4,000 in the state of Florida if an indivudual is a renter or owns a home but has not used the Homestead Exemption. Is this true?

Thanks much.

Attorney Answers 5


  1. The automobile exemption is still $1,000 in value. As for the wildcard exemption, it only applies if you do not have a homestead, or are surrendering the property and not declaring it as an exempt asset. An intent to keep the property, but not use the exemption is insufficient. There must be that intent to surrender the property. If the property is investment property then there is no homestead.

    Please contact an attorney to help you sort out your factual scenario and provide good direction.

    The response given is general in nature and based upon limited information. It does not and cannot replace that of a proper consultation with a qualified attorney. You should not act upon this Information alone, but should seek legal counsel prior to taking any action.


  2. Most states post all their laws on the state webpage & if you aren't ready to consult an attorney yet, I would urge you to look at the laws online for yourself. Autos are generally referred to as vehicles in exemption speak. Hope this perspective helps!.


  3. Yes, you have the basics. But there is another exemption or 2 that may be available to you. Contact a local BK attorney they will make sure you apply your exemptions correctly.


  4. Exemptions are a highly complicated part of bankruptcy law -- and the bankruptcy exemptions to not track the Florida exemptions item for item. For example the "wildcard" exemption you heard mentioned is not a Florida exemption -- it only applies if you are in bankruptcy. And I agree with my colleagues -- $1,000 remains the vehicle limit.

    But there are a host of exemptions that might apply to you -- and not all of them are Florida based, such as certain federal exemptions that may apply (did you work for the Railroad? Are you a member of the Klamath Indian Tribe?). You really should speak to a professional soon. And remember: most initial consults are free.


  5. The automobile exemption is still $1,000 for one vehicle. If your married, the spouse's vehicle also has a $1,000 exemption. The $4,000 wildcard exemption on any property applies only when you do not have a homestead residence or are surrendering property that was previously your homestead. However, in some bankruptcy courts of Florida, this $4,000 exemption (per spouse) is in addition to the normal $1,000 per spouse exemption on "any property" other than automobiles. Other bankruptcy courts of Florida previously ruled that the $4,000 was instead of the $1,000, but it is unclear whether they will rule the same way in the future.

    The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon any single source of information, including advertising on any Web sites or answers to questions posed on Avvo.com. You may ask us to send you additional information about us, and we urge you to review other sources of information about our primary practice areas.

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