What does Asset mean?

An asset is property owned by a person or company which has value and often can be sold or repossessed to meet debt obligations. Debtors who file bankruptcy will have to list all of their assets at the time they file bankruptcy. Some assets may be protected or exempt and not considered part of the debtor's bankruptcy estate.

Bankruptcy law allows debtors to keep certain assets so at the completion of bankruptcy the debtor is not destitute and will have some resources with which to make a fresh start. Filing Chapter 7, however, allows the court-appointed trustee to liquidate non-exempt assets and use the proceeds from the liquidation to repay the debtor's creditors. Chapter 13 allows assets to be protected, but debts are not immediately discharged. The debtor will, instead, be required to create a 3 or 5 year debt repayment plan to repay some or all of their debts.

Assets can include real estate or real property, which must be listed on Bankruptcy Schedule A. Information about the property must be included on the appropriate schedule. Information includes the location, description, amount of secured interest, and whether or not it is owned solely or jointly. Other assets include all of your personal property which must be listed on Bankruptcy Schedule B. Common types of personal property include furs, jewelry, guns, household items, boats, books, security accounts and machinery. Each state generally allows a certain amount of personal property to be exempt.

Assets which are exempt must be listed on Bankruptcy Schedule C along with information about the value of the asset and the exemption law protecting it. Assets which are not protected or exempt under your state or the federal bankruptcy exemption laws may be liquidated in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy to provide funds to repay creditors.

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