Helping With Your Financial Future

Will you lose your wedding ring and jewelry in bankruptcy?

On Behalf of | May 1, 2024 | Consumer Bankruptcy

There’s probably nothing more personal to someone than certain pieces of jewelry, especially when it comes to engagement and wedding rings, inherited watches and necklaces that express religious devotion. The gold cross your mother gave you at your confirmation or the watch your father gave you when you graduated college, for example, are far more than mere possessions.

If you’re worried about losing certain pieces of jewelry that can’t be valued according to their worth in dollars alone, the following information may ease your fears:

You generally keep everything in Chapter 13

A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is actually a debt reorganization plan that allows you to make affordable monthly payments over a period of three to five years before any remaining eligible debts are discharged. Most people who file Chapter 13 can keep everything they own, and that includes both sentimental items of jewelry and more.

You have exemptions that apply in Chapter 7

In general, you can keep jewelry, heirlooms and art with a total value of $8,725 or less. Since this is the resale value of the objects, not their value for insurance purposes, that is often enough to cover someone’s most treasured jewelry items. If it is not, there are additional “wildcards” and other exemptions that may apply.

Bankruptcy is not designed to strip everything away from a debtor just to try to satisfy their bills. It’s a dignified approach to serious financial problems, and bankruptcy exceptions are there to make sure that debtors are treated with compassion and fairness. You aren’t expected to give up absolutely everything you own to get real financial relief. Experienced legal guidance can help you learn more.