One of the questions I am often asked when people are about to file bankruptcy is what they will be allowed to keep. The things you’re allowed to keep if you file for bankruptcy are called exemptions. In bankruptcy in New York, you’re allowed to keep a house that has no more than $150,000 in equity. Equity is determined by subtracting the balance due on the mortgage from the actual value of the house. If the result is less than $150,000, you’re allowed to keep the house. As far as a car is concerned, you’re allowed to keep up to $4,000 worth of equity in a car. However, for most people who have a loan on their car, there is no equity at all and they’re allowed to keep their car. You’re also allowed to keep such things as your household goods and your wearing apparel, if they’re not too valuable, which is the case for most people. You can also keep all of your retirement benefits. There are other things you’re allowed to keep, even though you filed bankruptcy. And I would say for almost everybody who files, they get to keep just about everything they own. So if you’re thinking about filing bankruptcy, do not worry about losing anything that you own when you file. But talk to your bankruptcy lawyer first. And I think you’ll find that you’ll be able to keep everything.