The dollar amounts stated in various sections of the Bankruptcy Code are updated every three years, and April 1, 2013, is the date of the next update. While all of the relevant dollar amounts adjust on April 1, the most relevant are those that apply to the Federal Exemptions in all bankruptcy cases and the Chapter 13 debt limits which limit the amount of debt that a Chapter 13 Debtor can have and qualify for a Chapter 13 case. Adjustments to the Federal Exemptions are especially important in New Jersey Bankruptcy cases as the New Jersey State Law Exemptions are very limited and rarely used by New Jersey Bankruptcy Debtors. These adjustments do not include adjustments to the income and expense figures which apply to the means test which are adjusted periodically by the U.S. Trustee Program. You can download a PDF copy of the Adjustments on at the US Courts Website. Some of the relevant dollar amounts changed:
- Definition of Small Business Debtor (Section 101(51D)): $2,490,925
- Debt limits for Chapter 13 (Section 109(e)) for Unsecured Debt: $383,175
- Debt limits for Chapter 13 (Section 109(e)) for Secured Debt: $1,149,525
Remember that these and other issues of qualification for any form of bankruptcy as well as its impact should be reviewed with an experienced attorney as there is ample case law out there about how difficult it is to determine whether any particular claim is included in the “limits”.