How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask cfortunato Your Own Question

cfortunato
cfortunato, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 8023
Experience:  Bankruptcy professor.
14232603
Type Your Bankruptcy Law Question Here...
cfortunato is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How can I recover funds from an account, a creditor has put levy on?

Resolved Question:

My bank account was levied by a creditor in Pennsylvania. I have a court date on 1/24 to challenge the levy. My bankruptcy will be filed more than 20 days after the date of the bank levy, so I understand that debt cannot be discharged with the bankruptcy filing. I have two questions 1) Does my bank have to wait until after the hearing to release the funds to the creditor or can they release those funds to the creditor at any time? 2) I'm going to be arguing that my account is not eligible for levy but I'm guessing the judge will care less about what I have to say and uphold the levy. Is there anything I can do to recover the funds in that levied account in Pennsylvania?

Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  cfortunato replied 3 years ago.

Hi,
If the funds in your bank account are subject to a Bankruptcy exemption, the account can be released to you.
Are the funds in your bank account exempt?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I've almost gone blind reading all the PA regulations regarding bank levy for collections and in my opinion, the account in its entirety is not eligible for levy but many other people have disagreed with me, including my bank. The account includes funds that are the result of recurring direct deposits. Those direct deposits are my bi-weekly pay from my employer. Based on the changes that were made to PA law in 2010, personal income is exempted. However, people keep telling me that only social security, disability, and retirement pay is exempted. Is my regular bi-weekly pay exempt therefore making the entire account exempt from levy?

Expert:  cfortunato replied 3 years ago.

Wages cannot be garnished in Pennsylvania, but there is no protection for money in a bank account, even if the money is from your employer.

However, the money may be exempt because of an applicable Bankruptcy exemption:

1) Did you use the state or the federal exemptions?

2) If you used the federal exemptions, how much of the homestead exemption did you need to use for your home or for other assets?

3) How much money is in your bank account?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
There's $2500 in the account. I was not aware of the Homestead Exemption. What is that? How do I claim that?
Expert:  cfortunato replied 3 years ago.

The homestead exemption is the exemption for your home, if you own your home.

1) Do you own your home?

2) If yes, what is the current market value of your home?

3) If yes, what is the balance on the mortgage?

The homestead exemption amounts are different if you use the state exemptions

than if you use the federal exemptions.

4) Which set of exemptions did you use - state or federal?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

None of this was mentioned in the Writ Of Execution I received. Is this Homestead Exemption only available as part of a bankruptcy? My bankruptcy has not been filed yet. I've only requested a hearing for the bank levy. How do I claim this Homestead Exemption? I do own a house. The true market value is about $275,000 and the mortgage balance is $269,000.

Expert:  cfortunato replied 3 years ago.

The homestead exemption is a federal Bankruptcy exemption, so is only available if you file a Bankruptcy. The exemption amount is $21,625, and you can use up to $10,825 of that amount for any other property, including your bank account.
This means if you file a Bankruptcy before the money in your bank account is released to the judgement creditor, which takes around 30 days, the bank will not be allowed to release those funds to the judgement creditor.
However, if you file your Bankruptcy after the funds are released to the creditor, you may not be able to get your money back.

I think this is what you wanted to know. If not, please let me know.
Thank you.

cfortunato, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 8023
Experience: Bankruptcy professor.
cfortunato and 2 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3317
    Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3317
    Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TL/tleeders/2012-6-13_204815_TSL1.64x64.jpg Terry L.'s Avatar

    Terry L.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    2389
    Better Business Bur 15yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CO/cortrightlaw/2011-12-5_4117_Kevin.64x64.JPG cortrightlaw's Avatar

    cortrightlaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    511
    Attorney practicing Bankruptcy Law including Chapter 7, Chapter 11, Chapter 12, and Chapter 13.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DY/Dylatess/2012-9-11_1968_BHBTemplePhoto.64x64.jpg dylatess's Avatar

    dylatess

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    400
    37 plus years of experience specializing in bankruptcy law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/Jay1968/2006-12-03_004423_JoeRossPhoto.jpg JoeLawyer's Avatar

    JoeLawyer

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    376
    Attorney in the practice of Bankruptcy Law since 1996
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/US/USLawAnswers/2012-9-20_23143_20090105211638Headshot3b.64x64.jpg Brent Blanchard's Avatar

    Brent Blanchard

    Bankruptcy Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    318
    Twelve years experience in all aspects of debtor & creditor BK.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/savylawyer/2009-01-12_232317_web_pic_2.jpg A.J.'s Avatar

    A.J.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    261
    Experienced consumer bankruptcy attorney.
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Bankruptcy Lawyer
cfortunato
cfortunato
3102 Satisfied Customers
Bankruptcy professor.