Do I have to disclose cryptocurrency, gift cards, tax refunds, or property in a safe deposit box?
The definition of an asset is anything that is useful. It could be a person or thing. For example, when you watch a spy movie, you will hear the government agent call an informant an asset. The informant is a useful person to the agent. When it comes to bankruptcy anything that you own or have interest in is an asset. Almost everything has a value.
Obviously cars and homes are an asset. Many times, people who are thinking about bankruptcy, will say “I don’t have any property.” To these clients, “property” means real estate, such as a home, house, or condo. However, when it comes to bankruptcy everything that you own is property. Your car is obviously property. But that’s not it. Your jewelry, tools, appliances, furniture and even pets are property. For example, a race horse is property. Race horses could be worth thousands or more. A pure bred pet might even have value if you can breed it. Additional assets can include accounts receivalbes, gift cards, a winning lottery ticket, your inheritance, and life insurance. It also includes, stocks, bonds and cryptocurrency.
When you file bankruptcy everything must be disclosed on your bankruptcy paperwork. This includes contents of a safe deposit box, gift cards, prepaid debit cards, and your tax refunds. Remember, anything that has a value is an asset. Intentionally failing to disclose all your assets can be considered bankruptcy fraud. Bankruptcy fraud is a crime. When you file your bankruptcy documents, you are signing under the penalty of perjury that everything filed with the court is true, accurate, and complete to the best of your knoweldge.
The good news is that in most cases, all your property and assets can be protected in bankruptcy. Your $50 target giftcard is most likley not going to be taken by the bankruptcy trustee or court. In California, if you do not own a home, you can protect over $30k of your assets and property. To find out whether or not your assets are protected when you file bankruptcy, you should seek a consultation with an attorney. A good bankruptcy attorney, after a 30 minute consultation, should be able to tell you whether or not you will lose any property or assets in bankruptcy. They will also let you know if bankruptcy in general is a good option for you.