William H. Oliver, Jr. & Associates
Call today for a free consultation
Local 732-988-1500

Blog

New Jersey property exemptions in Chapter 7 bankruptcy

Part of the process of petitioning for bankruptcy under Chapter 7 ("liquidation" bankruptcy) is that the debtor must compile a list of property in his or her possession. The bankruptcy court and the bankruptcy trustee will use this list to determine what property may be sold off and the proceeds of sale used to pay claims of creditors.

Not all property of the debtor will be subject to sale. Bankruptcy law, specifically 11 U.S.C. §522(b), recognizes certain categories of "exemptions" for property. The debtor has the choice of using either the federal property exemptions, or any available state scheme of exemptions (the federal law allows states to enact their own alternative property exemption statutes).

New Jersey has its own exemption statutes consistent with this allowance under the federal law. The statutes are spread across different sections, covering various categories such as insurance, pensions, personal property and even wages, which can make identifying all of them difficult to do. Some notable points to bear in mind about the New Jersey exemptions are:

  • You can use either the federal or the New Jersey property exemptions, but not both. That is, you cannot pick and choose between federal and state law on an "a la carte" basis to maximize your exemptions. With the assistance of your bankruptcy attorney, you must decide which exemptions, federal or state , make the most sense for you.
  • With a limited exception for property held by tenants in the entirety, there is no "homestead exemption" under New Jersey law.
  • The New Jersey general property or "wildcard" exemption is $1,000.

Each person's reasons for making use of bankruptcy laws, and the specific financial and property circumstances involved, are unique. An important role of a bankruptcy attorney is to help guide the debtor through the intricacies of the applicable federal and state bankruptcy laws so that each individual client can come out of the process in the best position possible.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Get A Free Lawyer Consultation

With offices in Toms River and Neptune, attorney William H. Oliver is ready to answer your questions and help you find the right debt relief solution. Evening and Saturday appointments are available. Call local: 732-988-1500 or fill out our contact form.

Email Us For a Response

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Toms River Office
609 Main Street
Toms River, NJ 08753

Fax: 732-775-7404
Toms River Law Office Map

Neptune Office
2240 State Route 33
Neptune, NJ 07753

Phone: 732-341-1550
Fax: 732-775-7404
Neptune Law Office Map

visa, master card, american express, discover network