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Protecting Your Property in Bankruptcy – The Use of Exemptions

Exemptions are laws that protect your property when you file bankruptcy.  In order to benefit from a particular exemption, that exemption must be claimed in your bankruptcy schedules.  In most chapter 7 cases, by claiming the appropriate exemptions, a debtor will not have to relinquish or lose any property as a result of his or her filing bankruptcy.

Each state has its own set of exemptions.  There are also Federal exemptions.  Oregon is an opt-out state, meaning we use Oregon exemptions in lieu of Federal exemptions for bankruptcy purposes.

Below is a listing of some common Oregon exemptions:

  • Homestead Exemption: $40,000 in equity for an individual, $50,000 for joint filers
  • Wearing apparel/clothing: $1,800 per filer
  • Vehicle: $3,000 in equity per filer
  • Tools of the Trade: $5,000 per filer
  • Personal Injury Claims: $15,000 per filer
  • Domestic support/Child Support: 100%
  • Household goods, furnishings: $3,000
  • Social Security Benefits (traceable): 100%
  • Domestic Animals: $1,000
  • Wild Card Exemption: $400 per filer
  • Earned Income Credit: 100%
  • Wages: 75%
  • Pension Plans: 100%
  • Guns: 1 rifle or shotgun plus pistol per filer

These are some of the most common exemptions.  There are many other exemptions, however.

Part of the job of a good bankruptcy attorney is to analyze your assets and apply the correct exemptions and to the proper extent.

If you have any questions regardng your assets, exemptions, or bankruptcy in general, please feel free to contact us for a free bankruptcy consultation.





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Tom Butcher, Attorney At Law

Tom Butcher is the owner and attorney at Butcher Law Office, LLC. He represents clients in financial distress in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. Tom offers a friendly, respectful, and compassionate experience for clients who are in financial and legal distress. Rather than taking a mechanical approach to filing bankruptcy for clients, like other bankruptcy firms, Tom strives to offer a personal, one-on-one experience, where the client’s situation is of utmost importance. Tom believes this personal attention keeps him connected to the community, and serves his clients best during their bankruptcy.
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