This is a question that requires an in-depth analysis and consultation with OSBIG, as the answer will depend on the specific circumstances of each person.
In Michigan, Debtors have a choice to protect certain assets utilizing Federal Exemptions or Michigan Exemptions, if applicable. Following are some basic examples of the maximum allowed exemptions as of April 1, 2016.
- Equity in Personal Residence: $23,675.00 (unused portion up to $11,850.00 or Homestead Exemption may be applied to any property –additional “wild card” exemption)
- Equity in Motor Vehicle: $3,775.00
- Household Furnishings: $12,625.00
- Jewelry: $1,600.00
- Wildcard: $1,250.00*
- Tools of Trade: $2,375.00.
- Unmatured Life Insurance Policies: unlimited
- Life Insurance with cash value: $12,625.00
- Professional Prescribed Health Aids: unlimited
The Michigan Exemptions provide an unlimited exemption of entireties property** for those married Debtors who do not have any joint debt. The Michigan Exemptions also offer generous Homestead exemptions, $38,225.00 of equity in a home, and if you are a senior citizen or disabled the Homestead exemptions rises to $57,350.00.. Generally, the Federal Exemptions are best for individuals who have less equity in their home or are not eligible for the entireties exemption
*Aggregate interest in any property, not to exceed $1,250.00 plus up to $11,850.00 of unused amount of homestead exemption under Section 522(d)(1).
** “Entireties Property” is certain property that is owned jointly by a husband and wife that is not attachable by individual creditors of either spouse.]