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Will I Have to Sell my Family Heirlooms to Pay Creditors?

There are certain things in our lives that are beyond monetary value. They’re not “assets” or “belongings”—they’re part of our heritage, our memories, our family history. We don’t think about how much they’re worth, but how much they mean to us.

But what happens to those things when you declare bankruptcy? Does the bank make exemptions based on sentimental value? Does the court make room for emotional attachments?

Thankfully, in Texas, they do—to an extent.

Why You Won’t Need to Give Up Your Family Heirlooms

People who file for bankruptcy in Texas have access to Personal Property Exemptions, which allows them to claim certain items as exempt from the bankruptcy liquidation process. In other words, they can create a list of belongings that won’t be sold to pay off creditors. Individuals filing for bankruptcy can claim any number of items not exceeding a total value of $30,000. For families, the limit is $60,000.

Exempted items can include:

  • Furniture
  • Firearms
  • Jewelry
  • Books
  • Other personal items

Some items, such as sacred books (e.g. a family Bible) can be exempted without adding to the monetary limit. Most family heirlooms will fall within the Personal Property Exemptions, allowing you to protect items that are part of your family history.

When Your Family Heirlooms Are in Danger

However, there are some families where a family heirloom isn’t an item, but an entire house, or rental property, or piece of land. These do not fall under the Personal Property Exemptions. In fact, if you aren’t currently living in the aforementioned home, then it may be sold to pay off your creditors.

So, how do you declare bankruptcy and recover your financial future without losing a family home or family property? Speak with Attorney William Huebner, a Fort Worth bankruptcy attorney. The right bankruptcy lawyer can help you develop a strategy to keep important assets in the family, negotiate with creditors to protect what you care about, all while helping you claim financial freedom.

Speak with Attorney William Huebner today about your financial situation in a free, confidential consultation: call (817) 576-1889 or contact us using our short online form.

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