What Happens if I Transfer My Paid-in-Full Car to My Mother Before Filing for Bankruptcy?
If you recently transferred property (especially valuable property) out of your name, you might wonder if you should hold off filing for bankruptcy.
In general, if you transferred property to another person before filing for bankruptcy protection, the bankruptcy trustee might be able to void that transfer and get the property back in your name so it can benefit your creditors. Also, debtors lose their exemption rights when they transfer property out of their name prior to filing for bankruptcy protection. In addition, if the court has any reason to believe you made the transfer with the intent to defraud your creditors, the court could completely deny your petition for a bankruptcy discharge.
The consequences you face ultimately depend on the following factors:
- When you made the property transfer
- Whether you sold or transferred that property for less than its actual value
- Whether you intended to defraud your creditors
Delaying your bankruptcy filing might be the safest option if you made a transfer that could jeopardize your ability to earn a discharge. However, even delaying bankruptcy might not protect you from legal consequences if the court finds that the transfer was fraudulent.
Keep Ohio bankruptcy exemptions in mind
In general, if you have valuable property you wish to keep, your best bet is to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and arrange a repayment plan rather than attempt to shield assets by transferring them to others.
You should also make use of as many state bankruptcy exemptions as you can. The state provides a full list of Ohio bankruptcy exemptions.
For more information and advice on filing for bankruptcy in Ohio, speak with a dedicated Dayton attorney at Fox & Associates Co., L.P.A.