Nevada Bankruptcy Exemptions
Are you worried about how you are going to pay your bills? Have you fallen behind on payments? Have you thought about bankruptcy? If you have been thinking about bankruptcy, you might be worried that you will lose some, if not all of your property. That may not be true. In Nevada, bankruptcy exemptions protect certain amounts and types of property from creditors.
Individuals file for bankruptcy for a variety of reasons. Federal bankruptcy laws were enacted to give honest debtors who were unable to pay their debts a “fresh start.” An individual may be reluctant to file for bankruptcy due to concerns of losing some or all of their property. Under the Bankruptcy Code, debtors may use exemptions to protect some, or all, of their property.
The role of exemptions in a bankruptcy will vary and depends on whether a debtor files for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. In bankruptcy, the debtor is a person who files a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you file for bankruptcy, you are the debtor. The debtor owes a financial obligation/debt to creditors.
Exemptions in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
In bankruptcy, Chapter 7 is the “liquidation” chapter. Under Chapter 7, a bankruptcy trustee may collect and liquidate or sell the debtor’s nonexempt money and assets. The trustee then uses the proceeds to pay the creditors. A trustee is an officer appointed by the court who oversees a bankruptcy case. The bankruptcy then discharges (cancels) any remaining balances owed to creditors. The trustee cannot sell all property. A debtor is allowed to keep certain “exempt” property.
Some debtors have a “no asset” case. This means that exemptions apply to all of the debtor’s assets. In a “no asset” case, the debtor does not have to give up any property.
Exemptions in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is for an individual debtor who has a regular source of income. Bankruptcy titles Chapter 13 “adjustment of debts of an individual with regular income.” Chapter 13 differs from Chapter 7 because the trustee does not sell off the property. Instead, the debtor proposes a “plan” to repay creditors over time – from three to five years. The debtor must complete the payments required under the plan before receiving the discharge.
In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, non-exempt property is used to determine how much a debtor pays under the repayment plan. A creditor in Chapter 13 can be no worse off than a creditor in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. In Chapter 7, the trustee sells non-exempt assets. In Chapter 13, the repayment plan calculations include non-exempt assets.
The Bankruptcy Code and Nevada law “exempts” certain assets. A debtor is allowed to keep exempt property when filing for bankruptcy. If you file for bankruptcy, you will identify all of your property and possible exemptions. This may include listing the property and outstanding liens on the property. Depending on the type of property, a Nevada exemption may be available to protect the item. If you are a married couple filing jointly, you may double the exemption. Please note, you cannot double the homestead exemption.
Nevada bankruptcy exemptions are only available for persons residing in Nevada. Nevada exemptions may not apply if you have not resided in Nevada for two or more years. This information and additional Nevada-specific bankruptcy details can help you preserve more of your property. Our experienced team at Anthem Bankruptcy Lawyers is here to help you. Anthem Bankruptcy Lawyers have bankruptcy experience and can answer questions specific to your individual situation. Bankruptcy has long-term consequences and you should understand how the law applies to you. Reach us online or at (702) 857-6000.
Nevada Bankruptcy Exemptions
Nevada Revised Statute 21.090 provides all of the Nevada exemptions. Below is a list of some exemptions found in NRS 21.090. The value exempted varies by item.
- Private libraries, works of art, musical instruments and jewelry up to $5,000 in value. NRS 21.090(1)(a)
- All family pictures and keepsakes. NRS 21.090(1)(a)
- Necessary household goods, furnishings, electronics, wearing apparel, other personal effects and yard equipment up to $12,000 in value. NRS 21.090(1)(b)
- One vehicle with equity up to $15,000. Not exempt from car finance companies. NRS 21.090(1)(f)
- One gun. NRS 21.090(1)(i)
Tools of the Trade
- Farm trucks, farm stock, farm tools, farm equipment, supplies, and seed up to $4,500 in value. NRS 21.090(1)(c)
- Up to $10,000 in value of professional libraries, equipment, supplies. This includes the tools, inventory, instruments and materials the debtor uses to carry on their trade or business. NRS 21.090(1)(d)
- All arms, uniforms and accouterments that the law requires any person to keep. NRS 21.090(1)(i)
- Public assistance provided through the Department of Health and Human Services. NRS 21.090(1)(kk)
- Child welfare assistance NRS 21.090(1)(ll)
- Child support NRS 21.090(1)(s)
- Spousal support NRS 21.090(1)(t)
- Social Security payments including retirement and survivors’ benefits, supplemental security income benefits, and disability insurance benefits. NRS 21.090(1)(y)
- Protects homestead equity in the debtor’s primary residence up to $605,000 in value. This exemption is so the trustee cannot sell the debtor’s house to pay off his/her debts. The exemption does not protect the property from the mortgage company. NRS 21.090(1)(m)
- Security deposits paid to a landlord. NRS 21.090(1)(n)
- For any workweek, 82 percent of disposable earnings during that week if the weekly salary or wage was $770 or less. 75 percent of disposable earnings during that week if the weekly salary or wage exceeded $770. NRS 21.090(1)(g)
- “Wildcard” exemption of up to a $10,000 value. Available to protect any asset up to $10,000. Some individuals use the exemption to protect boats, RVs, money, or an inheritance. NRS 21.090(1)(z)
- Life insurance NRS 21.090(1)(k)
- Pensions, IRA, and 401(K) plans not to exceed $1,000,000. NRS 21.090(1)(r)
- Personal injury settlements up to $16,150. Pain and suffering and lost wages compensation do not have a limit and are exempt. NRS 21.090(1)(u)
- Portion of tax return derived from the earned income tax credit. NRS 21.090(1)(aa)
Exemptions Do Not Apply to Everything
Unless the value of the wildcard exemption applies, a debtor cannot claim the following as exempt:
- Valuable collections over $5,000.
- Vacation homes, rental homes, or any other nonresidential real estate/commercial property.
- Excess cash, savings, bonds, or investments not covered under NRS 21.090(1)(r).
- Federal income tax refunds.
- RVs, boats, and additional automobiles not covered under a primary exemption.
Hire a Las Vegas Bankruptcy Lawyer Before You File
Consult with our Las Vegas bankruptcy lawyers, We can help you navigate the process so you can emerge from bankruptcy as favorably as possible. The bankruptcy process is complex and has long-term legal and financial consequences. You should consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney if you are considering bankruptcy. Anthem Bankruptcy Lawyers are an experienced team and provide free consultations. Contact us today by phone at (702) 857-6000 or online.