How do you value your car for the purposes of bankruptcy Exemptions?
Since Oklahoma has opted out of the federal exemptions, it provides for their own exemption statutes under title 31 of the Oklahoma Statutes section (A)(1) and under 31 O.S. §A (1) (13) and individual may exempt a vehicle for its value up to $7,500.00 in equity.
In today’s world, with numerous vehicle valuation “authorities” such as Kelly Blue Book, NADA and public classifieds such as Craig’s list and E-Bay, you could find yourself in a wide spectrum of pricing for your precious vehicle. Meanwhile, in the world of bankruptcy the valuation of your car on your petition could mean the difference of keeping the car under the applicable exemption statutes or surrendering it to the bankruptcy estate for liquidation.
Now the question is which end of the spectrum to stand on for valuing your vehicle. The safest method would be to check on the most expensive retail valuation method for your vehicle model & year at the current mileage to see if it exceeds the exemption threshold but in realistically speaking, you would need to take into consideration that most used vehicles are not sold at retail values (unless it involves a vintage model vehicles that increase in value as they age) and since the Bankruptcy estate would need to liquidate any vehicles as quickly as possible, often times help of auctioneers are enlisted at a hefty commission and most vehicles sold at auction will not bring in the high retail values listed on any of the above valuation sites.
Taking these into consideration, although there are no set instructions as to how to list your vehicle values, we have found it most realistic to use top trade in values for most vehicles at excellent condition standards.
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