Texas Bankruptcy Exemptions

The State of Texas has both federal and state bankruptcy exemptions available for those filing bankruptcy. Exempt property is that which is protected from creditors when you file bankruptcy. You have the option of utilizing the state or federal exemptions when you file bankruptcy in Texas. After filing for bankruptcy, the exempt property is safe. Be aware that there are certain debts, which you will not be able to erase in bankruptcy. These are non-dischargeable debts.

There are some limits on certain exemptions such as equity that you have in a home or in a vehicle. The difference between the cost of the item and the amount owed on the item is the definition of equity. If the item, such as a car or home, is secured by a loan and payments are made on time, the equity is protected by your exemptions. A debtor must generally pay the trustee the value of the non-exempt property in order to keep the property. If you choose to keep the property, continual timely payments ensure that the property is protected through the bankruptcy.

This is a list of some of the available state exemption in the State of Texas. Federal exemptions are described elsewhere on this Web site. You can obtain and more detailed list of exemptions by contacting a qualified Texas bankruptcy attorney in your area. They will be able to list and explain all of the state and federal exemptions. There is certain property, which is excluded or exempt that the debtor can keep based on their specific situation and personal income.

The best way to determine which exemptions to utilize is to meet with a qualified and proven bankruptcy attorney who can evaluate your individual case and guide you through the process. Contact an attorney today.

Asset

Homestead: Unlimited, although, property cannot exceed 10 acres in town, village, city, or 100 acres elsewhere (200 per family). Sale proceeds exempt for 6 months after sale. Renting is okay if another home not acquired. Must file homestead declaration, or court will file it for you and charge you a fee.

Pensions: Tax-exempt retirement accounts, including 401(k)s, 403(b)s, SEP and SIMPLE IRAs, defined-benefit, profit-sharing and money-purchase plans. Traditional and Roth IRAs to $1,095,000 per person, ERISA qualified benefits, government or church benefits, including Keoghs and IRAs. Law enforcement officers, firefighters and emergency medical personnel survivors, Municipal employees and elected officials, state employees Retirement benefits to extent tax-deferred, County and district employees, Firefighters, Judges, Police officers, Teachers

Insurance: Texas employee uniform group insurance, Texas state college or university employee benefits, Texas public school employees’ group insurance, Life, health, accident or annuity benefits, monies, policy proceeds and cash value, due or paid to beneficiary or insured, Fraternal benefit society benefits, Church benefit plan benefits

Miscellaneous: Property of business partnership, Alimony and child support, Higher education savings plan trust account, Liquor licenses and permits

Personal Property: Includes items below up to $60,000 total for family, or $30,000 for single adult, clothing and food, Two firearms, Health aids (exempt from total), burial plots (exempt from total), Health savings account, Athletic and sporting equipment, including bicycles, Home furnishings, Family heirlooms, Jewelry (no more than 25% of total exemption), Pets, domestic animals and their food: two horses, mules, donkeys and tack, Twelve head of cattle, Sixty head of other livestock, One hundred twenty fowl, One motor vehicle per family member or per single adult who holds a driver’s license; or if not licensed, who relies on someone else to operate vehicle. Vehicle can be two, three or four wheeled.

Public Benefits: Unemployment compensation, Workers’ compensation, Crime victims’ compensation, Medical assistance, Public assistance

Tools of Trade: Tools, books, equipment and boat or motor vehicle used in trade, Farming or ranching vehicles and implements

Wages: Earned but unpaid wages, Unpaid commissions not to exceed 25% of total personal property exemptions

Wildcard: None

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