Filing a St. Louis bankruptcy does not automatically mean that you will lose your assets, like a car or house. In fact, it is the number goal at The Bankruptcy Company to make sure that you keep all of your belongings (whether it is personal or real property).
The state of Missouri allows a St. Louis bankruptcy attorney to use what are called “exemptions”. Exemptions are legal tools to keep your property safe. So for instance, let’s say you have a 2011 Honda Accord with a loan balance of $10,000. And let us assume that the value of this vehicle is $13,000. On paper, your car has equity of $3,000 (13,000 – 10,000 = 3,000). But the exemption for a car in Missouri is $3,000 for an individual (and $6,000 for a joint married couple). So in the example provided, the $3,000 of equity is eliminated by the exemption for $3,000. This in turn will keep your car safe and in your hands.
In terms of real estate, Missouri allows for a $15,000 exemption in your residence. So if your home has equity of up to $15,000, this exemption will protect your house. For household goods, the state exemption is $3,000 for an individual (and $6,000 for a joint married couple). There are also exemptions for things like jewelry, clothes, 401K, books and artwork, etc.