New York Bankruptcy Exemptions

The wild card option under New York bankruptcy exemption statutes and related rules

The State of New York bankruptcy exemptions place many state residents in a perplexing situation. Total equity which may claimed as exempt, for homestead property, is only $10,000. For most residents, home equity loans are a prime source of cash flow to avoid filing. The purpose of the state exemption is intended to provide basic necessities when beginning the fresh start promised originally by the US Congress. In the exercise of congressional powers, each state is allowed to establish their own exempt property schedules and amounts. For New Yorkers, from Manhattan to Albany, real estate appreciation and market values out striped the homestead exemption many years ago.

Alternatives under state law

Rather than choose the homestead exemption, each state resident is permitted an option to retain $5,000, in cash as a wild card option, vehicle equity in the amount of $2,400, and an extensive list of personal household items. Additionally, modest provisions are made for limited retention of pensions, qualified retirement benefits, and receipts from public assistance programs.