Disclosing Assets in a Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is a debt relief tool that is available to those individuals who have found themselves facing unfortunate financial circumstances. A key component in any bankruptcy filing is the schedule of assets submitted to within your petition to the bankruptcy court. When filing, debtors have a mandatory obligation to disclose all of their assets, liabilities, debts, income, and expenses. Although a Chapter 13 bankruptcy protects assets from liquidation, the Trustee may take assets in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and sell them, unless the assets are exempted. Even if the failure to disclose information was a mistake, the debtor may still face penalties. 

Most clients are aware of the majority of their assets – such as bank accounts, stock accounts, investment accounts, jewelry, vehicles, furniture, and homes; however, there are times the clients are unaware of other items that a trustee considers an asset – such as tax returns, monies owed to client, expected commission and/or sales, foreign assets, or a potential personal injury claim or lawsuit.

When beginning the filing process, it is important to take your time and make sure all questions are answered properly. It is also important not to dismiss an asset simply because it may have a small market value or because to you it is not as important. 

Attorney’s can help you understand the consequences of disclosing your assets, as well as thoroughly explaining why the importance of disclosing. Additionally, the attorney will assists you in exempting certain allowable assets, if eligible, in order to protect them from the trustee. If you have any questions regarding the disclosure of assets in bankruptcy, please feel free to contact the Law Office of Ray Garcia, P.A., at 305-227-4030 or via email at legal@raygarcialaw.com for a free consultation.