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TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 12032
Experience:  JD, MBA
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I have suffered tremendous losses both in the RE and securities

Resolved Question:

I have suffered tremendous losses both in the RE and securities markets. because I was highly leveraged I am considering BK. I am 71 years of age. Are there any legal protections for my home if I were to declare BK? How could I get pro bono help? Thank you for your help. John Tiernan
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 8 years ago.

Hello, and thank you for allowing me to address your legal concerns.

Question: “Are there any legal protections for my home if I were to declare BK?”

Answer: The answer is yes…to a point. The applicable Georgia law states in pertinent part as follows:

§ 44-13-100. Exemptions for purposes of bankruptcy and intestate insolvent estates

(a) In lieu of the exemption provided in Code Section 44-13-1, any debtor who is a natural person may exempt, pursuant to this article, for purposes of bankruptcy, the following property:

(1) The debtor's aggregate interest, not to exceed $10,000.00 in value, in real property or personal property that the debtor or a dependent of the debtor uses as a residence, in a cooperative that owns property that the debtor or a dependent of the debtor uses as a residence, or in a burial plot for the debtor or a dependent of the debtor. In the event title to property used for the exemption provided under this paragraph is in one of two spouses who is a debtor, the amount of the exemption hereunder shall be $20,000.00;

So, according to the above law, you can exempt either $10k or $20k of your home’s value (depending on whether you’re married) if you file for bankruptcy. In layman’s terms, this means that if you have less than either $10k or $20k (which ever applies) of equity in your home, then the home cannot be sold. If you have more than the exempted amount in equity, then the home can be sold, but your would get the amount of the exemption in cash before the unsecured creditors get any of the proceeds.

Question: “How could I get pro bono help?”

Answer: Depending on your circumstances, you may qualify for legal assistance from your local Legal Aid office. Therefore, you should contact the following legal centers:

Atlanta Legal Aid Society, Inc.
XXXXX N.W.
Atlanta , GA NNN-NN-NNNN
Phone:(NNN) NNN-NNNN/p>

Georgia Legal Services Program
XXXXX Suite 250
Atlanta , GANNN-NN-NNNN
Phone:(NNN) NNN-NNNN/p>

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DISCLAIMER: Please understand that the complexities of most legal problems cannot be adequately addressed in this setting, and that I am only licensed to practice law in the state of Maryland. Accordingly, you acknowledge (1) that we have not formed an attorney-client relationship, and (2) that my post is general information only and is not specific legal advice.

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