Forum Rules (Everyone Must Read!!!) (updated: 04/28/2015)

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Just filed and money left in my bank account

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  • Just filed and money left in my bank account

    So my case was just filed on Friday and I got my case number. Now waiting for date of 341 meeting. My question is, I have about $330 left in my bank account, after getting money orders for any remaining bills. Am I going to be able to use anymore of that money for gas, food? I get paid twice a month and next paycheck won't be until Jan, 15, will the trustee still try to take my money then to pay creditors? I'm nervous...

  • #2
    You would have, or your attorney did, exempt any remaining money that you had on hand the day that you filed. I had $20 in my pocket the day that I filed, and I spent $15 to take a taxi to within 7 miles of my house. I had to call collect to get someone to pick me up from a hotel. But... I was the happiest guy on the planet.

    When did you get the money orders? What was put on your Schedule B for cash on hand? Was any of it exempted on Schedule C?
    Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
    Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
    Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog

    I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.


    • #3
      When you, or you bankruptcy attorney, completed your bankruptcy paperwork you made use of exemptions to protect your personal property and assets. The exemptions that you have available will vary based on what state you live in and if your state allows for you to use state-specific exemption or federal exemptions.

      Before you filed, did you review your bankruptcy petition? If so, then it should have listed what property, assets and cash you were marking as exempt. Anything outside of what you exempted could potentially be used by the trustee to pay back creditors.

      If you used an attorney for your bankruptcy, I would contact them to get a better idea of what money that was exempted. You can also review Schedule C from your bankruptcy petition and it should indicate how much money you marked as exempt.


      • #4
        I'll add to the prior very good replies that in most "normal" Chapter 7 cases, cash and bank accounts are fully exempted and therefore the debtor (you) is free to use that money. But again, make sure that money was exempted. If it wasn't but should have been, you can amend your Schedule C (exemptions) to exempt it properly.


        • #5
          Whether or not the money was exempted, the trustee is not going to suddenly freeze your bank account, leaving you unable to eat and pay bills. If you had a significant amount of non-exempt funds, the trustee may choose to make you an "asset case" and demand that you repay the non-exempt amount, perhaps in payments over time. By "significant", I mean an amount which is large enough to yield a meaningful payout to your creditors, and a large enough commission to the trustee in order to justify the work involved.

          For a balance of $330, even if not exempt, I can guarantee you the trustee isn't going to bother. After all, for the trustee to demand such a tiny amount of money would do nothing more than screw you over--it wouldn't result in a payout of more than a few dollars to any of your creditors.

          When I filed, I was over the exemption amount for "funds in a bank account", which was only $300, by another $300-400. I also had a laptop and a printer which were not statutorily exempt though I attempted to use the "typewriter exemption" to cover them. The trustee did not even bother to ask about this. Why not? Because even if he had forced me to turn over the non-exempt funds and computer equipment (which I desperately needed as I was going to college at the time), the recovery wouldn't even make a scratch in my $45,000+ of debts.


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