For most of us, our car is not just a car—it is our primary means of holding a job and living where we choose. In Arizona, cars are especially important. The Phoenix metro area is incredibly spread out, and while public transportation is improving, it is nowhere near the level of cities like Boston or New York. The intense summer heat also makes travel by foot or bike very difficult for much of the year, so having a car is vital if you have a considerable distance to commute.
If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, your first thought was likely whether you would be able to keep your home and your vehicle. Arizona has a homestead exemption that allows you to keep your home if you have up to $150,000 of equity in your home. There is a similar exemption in place for your vehicle, too: the amount of equity you have in your vehicle determines whether or not it can be taken to repay your creditors.
If you are filing for bankruptcy alone, you can exempt as much as $6,000 of equity. If you have a physical disability, you can exempt up to $12,000.
If you are filing a joint bankruptcy with your spouse, you can double your exemption and exempt up to $12,000 in equity.
If the equity in your vehicle is a higher amount, your bankruptcy trustee can sell your car to help repay your creditors. It is important to remember that the vehicle exemption can only be applied to one vehicle—if you have a second car, you will likely need to use it to repay your debts.
At Curry, Pearson, & Wooten, our Phoenix bankruptcy lawyers can help you maximize your exemptions in order to keep as much as your property as possible. Find out how by speaking with one of our attorneys today at 602-258-1000.