Virgina Laws on Wage Garnishments, Statute of Limitations on Debt, and Bankruptcy Property Exemptions


MAXIMUM INTEREST RATE:  Legal: 8%  Judgment: 9% or contract rate


Open Account (credit card):  3 years
Written contract:  5 years
Domestic Judgment: 20 years
Foreign Judgment: 10 years

BAD CHECK LAW DAMAGES:  Three times check amount or $250, whichever is less


Cannot use federal exemptions, but can use federal non-bankruptcy exemptions

The State of Virginia has exempted the property and income below from seizure by the bankruptcy court to pay creditors:

Real Property:  Real property up to $5,000; can add $500 per dependent; proceeds from sale of exempt property are also exempt (must file homestead exemption before filing bankruptcy) [34-4 and 34-6]
Personal Property:  Must be a householder to claim any personal property exemption.  Estate sale proceeds up to amount of unused real estate exemption [34-20]; tools, books and instruments of trade including motor vehicles, up to $10,000 total [34-26]; bible, unlimited amount [34-26(1)]; wedding and engagement rings, unlimited amount [34-26(1)(a)]; family portraits and heirlooms up to $5,000 total [34-26(2)]; burial plot, unlimited amount [34-26(3)], up to $1,000 worth of clothing [34-26(4)]; household furnishings up to $5,000 [34-26(4)(a)]; pets, unlimited amount [34-26(5)]; health aids, unlimited amount [34-26(6)]; motor vehicle up to $2,000 [34-26(8)]; farm equipment including up to $1,000 worth of fertilizer, two horses, two mules and gear, two plows, pitchfork, rake, wagon, drag, harvest cradle, two iron wedges and tractor valued up to $3,000 [34-27]; personal injury recoveries, unlimited amount [34-28.1]; uniforms, arms and equipment required for military use [44-96]; crops, unlimited amount [8.01-489]
Insurance / Annuities:  Cooperative life insurance benefits, unlimited amount [38.2-3811]; benefits from fraternal society, unlimited amount [38.2-4118]; group life insurance policy or proceeds, unlimited amount [38.2-3339]; government group life or accidence insurance, unlimited amount [51.1-510]; burial benefits, unlimited amount [38.2-4021]; accident or sickness benefits, unlimited amount [38.2-3549]
Debt Statutes  > Virginia
Pensions / Retirement Plans:  75% of earned but unpaid pension payments (low income debtors might be allowed to keep more) [34-29]; employees of cities, towns and counties, unlimited amt [51.1-802]; retirement benefits up to $17,500 per year [34-34]
Public Benefits / Entitlements:  Unemployment compensation, unlimited amount [60.2-600]; workers' compensation, unlimited amount [65.2-531]; aid to blind, aged, disabled, and families with dependent children and general assistance, unlimited amount [63.1-88]; crime victims' compensation, unlimited amt but not if debt for treatment of injury incurred during crime [19.2-368.12]
Wages:  75% of earned but unpaid wages [34-29]
Miscellaneous:  Any property for disabled veteran homeowner up to $2,000 [34-4.1]; business partnership property (check statute for current exemption) [50-25]