Sen Lyndia Brasch

Senator Lyndia Brasch has sponsored a bill in the Nebraska legislature to increase the amount of personal property protected in Nebraska bankruptcy cases.

According to Brasch it is necessary to update Nebraska property exemptions to keep pace with the higher cost of living.

The statute governing exemptions has not been updated in 17 years. Mandating a larger amount for exemptions allows individuals filing bankruptcy to get back on their feet.

Legislative Bill 757 would make the following changes to Nebraska personal property exemptions:

  • Wild Card Exemption: Increase the “Wild Card” exemption of 25.1552 from $2,500 per debtor to $5,000.  The wildcard exemption protects any type of personal property including bank account deposits, tax refunds, motor vehicles, etc.
  • Household Goods: Protection for household goods and furnishings increases from $1,500 per debtor to $3,000.
  • Tools of the Trade: Implements, tools or professional books or supplies protection increases from $2,400 to $5,000.
  • Motor Vehicle: A brand new provision would protect up to $5,000 per debtor in a motor vehicle.  Unlike the current version of this law, the protection would not be limited to vehicles used in a trade or driven to and from work.  This new exemption can be used in combination with the wildcard exemption to protect up to $10,000 of equity in a vehicle.

17 years is a long time to update exemptions that have been eroded with the normal cost of living increases.  Let’s hope Senator Brasch’s proposal gets approved this year.