The United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Arizona offers a breakdown of bankruptcy exemptions in the state. In order to be eligible for the exemptions, the debtor or debtors must have lived in Arizona for two years before filing for bankruptcy. If they haven’t fulfilled that timeline, they would have to adhere to their previous state’s exemption laws, or, if those don’t apply, the federal bankruptcy exemptions.
For those who are eligible, below is a list of commonly used exemption:
- Interest in real property upon which debtor’s house sits, condominium or cooperative, mobile home, or mobile home in which debtor resides plus the land upon which the mobile home is located in the amount of $150,000. May not be doubled by husband and wife.
Husband and wife may double all personal property exemptions.
- Household furniture and furnishings, household goods, including consumer electronic devices, and household appliances personally used by the debtor or a dependent of a debtor in an amount not greater than $6,000 (total fair market value).
- All food, fuel and provisions for debtor’s individual or family use to last up to six months.
- All wearing apparel used primarily for personal, family or household purposes with a fair market value not greater than $500.
- All musical instruments for debtor’s individual or family use with a total fair market value not greater than $400.
- Domestic pets, horses, milk cows and poultry with a fair market value not greater than $500.
- All engagement and wedding rings with a total fair market value not greater than $2,000.
- Debtor’s library, including books, manuals, published materials and personal documents with a fair market value not greater than $250.
- One watch with a fair market value not greater than $150.
- One typewriter, one computer, one bicycle, one sewing machine, a family bible, a burial plot, one shotgun or one rifle or one pistol, with a total fair market value not greater than $1,000.
- Equity in one car not greater than $6,000. If debtor (or debtor’s dependent) is physically disabled, the fair market value of the motor vehicle must not be greater than $12,000. (Equity is the fair market value of the motor vehicle minus debt to secured creditor).
- Professional prescribed prostheses for debtor or a dependent of the debtor, including a wheelchair. No Limit.
Money, Benefits or Proceeds
- Life insurance proceeds if payable to surviving spouse or child upon the life of a deceased spouse, parent or legal guardian. No Limit.
- Minor child’s earnings unless debt to be discharged was contracted for the special benefit of the minor child.
- Child support or spousal maintenance received pursuant to a court order.
- All money, proceeds or benefits from employer health, accident, disability insurance benefits or similar employer benefit program.
- All proceeds from destruction of or damage to exempt property and all proceeds or benefits arising from fire or other insurance on exempt property.
- Cash surrender value of life insurance policies where for a continuous unexpired period of two years such policies have been owned by a debtor and have named as beneficiary the debtor’s surviving spouse, child, parent, brother or sister, or any other dependent family member, except for the amount of any premium that is avoidable by a creditor as a fraudulent transfer.
- An annuity contract where for a continuous unexpired period of two years such contract has been owned by a debtor and has named as beneficiary the debtor, debtor’s surviving spouse, child, parent, brother or sister, or any other dependent family member, except for the amount of any premium that is avoidable by a creditor as a fraudulent transfer.
- Any claim for damages for levy upon or sale under execution of exempt personal property or for wrongful taking or detention of exempt personal property. Does not apply to annuities, nor to cash surrender values increased by premium payments made within two years in excess of the average annual premium paid during the previous three years.
- Bank deposit not to exceed $300. This sum is not exempt from normal service charges assessed by the bank holding the funds.
- Benefits from ERISA-qualified retirement plan or deferred compensation plan except those amounts contributed within 120 days before a debtor files for bankruptcy. Does not apply to an alternate payee under a qualified domestic relations order. Does not apply to assets of bankruptcy proceedings filed before July 1, 1987. Not exempt from orders resulting from a judgment for child support arrearages or child support debt.
- Prepaid rent, including security deposits as provided in § 33-1321(A) for debtor’s residence, not exceeding the lesser of $2,000 where debtor has not claimed a homestead exemption. Not exempt from orders resulting from a judgment for child support arrearages or child support debt.
- Group life insurance policy or proceeds.
If you’re concerned about a particular exemption, or have questions about your specific situation, call Skinner Law Group today at (480) 422-3440 to schedule your free bankruptcy consultation.