Virginia State Bankruptcy Laws


What Are The Virginia Bankruptcy Exemptions?

VirginiaVirginia law protects all or a portion of your property from being seized by creditors or the bankruptcy trustee in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are generally allowed to keep all of your assets and property. Certain exceptions may apply, so it's wise to consult with a Virginia bankruptcy attorney to find which of your assets will be protected in a bankruptcy filed in Virginia. In general, the major Virginia bankruptcy exemptions include:

General Virginia Exemptions
Real Estate (the Homestead Exemption)
Up to $5,000 of equity in your homestead plus $500 for each dependent can be protected.
Automobiles
Up to $2,000 of equity in one motor vehicle can be protected.
Other Property
Family bible; wedding and engagement rings; family portraits and heirlooms not to exceed $5,000 in value; one burial lot and one pre-need funeral contract not to exceed $5,000; $1,000 in clothing; household furnishings not to exceed $5,000 in value; all pets; all medically prescribed health aids; $10,000 in tools of the trade.
View the complete list of Virginia bankruptcy exemptions

Please remember that this page provides general information only, and is not intended to provide legal advice. The information is not a substitute for the advice of a qualified bankruptcy attorney. If you need legal assistance, consult an attorney.

Which state's exemption laws apply in your bankruptcy?

VirginiaGenerally, the laws of the state in which you lived for the 730 days (2 years) prior to filing a bankruptcy petition will apply in your bankruptcy.

If you have not lived in the same state for the 2 years immediately prior to filing your bankruptcy petition, the laws of the state in which you lived for the majority of the 180-day period preceding the 2-year period will likely apply.

If application of the preceding general rules renders you ineligible for exemptions under any state's laws, you may be allowed to choose the federal exemptions applicable in your bankruptcy.

Is Virginia a Community Property State?

No, Virginia is not a community property state. Because it is not a community property state, you will be responsible for your spouse's debts only if you voluntarily assumed those debts by, for example, co-signing on a loan given to your spouse. In a non-community property state, one spouse can file for bankruptcy and be eligible to eliminate all of their unsecured debts without the involvement of the other spouse.

How did your senator vote on the new bankruptcy laws?

Following years of intense lobbying by creditors, Congress passed the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005" (BAPCPA). How did your Senators vote on these largely pro-creditor provisions?

Allen (R-VA) — YEA
Warner (R-VA) — YEA

Virginia Bankruptcy Court Locations:

U.S. Bankruptcy Court
200 S. Washington St.
Alexandria, VA
22314-5405
(703) 258-1200

U.S. Bankruptcy Court
600 Granby Street
4th Floor
Norfolk, VA
23510
(757) 222-7500

U.S. Bankruptcy Court
1100 E. Main Street
Room 301
Richmond, VA
23219
(804) 916-2400

U.S. Bankruptcy Court
101 25th Street
Room 106
Newport News, VA
23607
(757) 222-7500

United States Bankruptcy Court
210 Church Avenue SW, Room 200
Roanoke, VA 24011
(540) 857-2391

United States Bankruptcy Court
1101 Court St., Room 166
Lynchburg, VA 24504
(434) 845-0317

United States Bankruptcy Court
116 N. Main St, Room 223
P.O. Box 1407
Harrisonburg, VA 22802
(540) 434-8327

Note: You may not have to actually go to one of the above bankruptcy courts. Trustees often conduct your meeting at a local venue.

Although bankruptcy is federal law, the bankruptcy courts in each jurisdiction have local rules that must be followed. A local bankruptcy attorney will be familiar with the specific rules in your area.

Virginia Bankruptcy Attorney Locations:

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