Skip to Content Top

Selling Your Assets After Bankruptcy: What You Need To Know


Now that your bankruptcy case is finally finished, you are probably wondering if you can begin to sell your assets for cash. But before you post your car, house, and other assets up on Craigslist, you should be aware of a few things first. Below, we answer some common concerns that you might have about selling your assets after declaring bankruptcy.

Trustee Ownership

After you’ve filed for bankruptcy, a trustee becomes the legal owner of your assets. This includes your house, car, jewelry, and anything else you own on the date your case was filed. You can’t sell or give away your property without first getting approval from the trustee and bankruptcy court. A trustee’s right to sell your assets is independent from the granting of your discharge. A trustee retains their rights over your assets until either:

  • The Property Is Formally “Abandoned”
  • Your Case Is Closed

It’s important to note that your case doesn’t close with your discharge. Your case might close within a couple of weeks after the discharge if no assets are being sold. However, it can take years for your case to come to end if there are assets you are trying to sell.

A Trustee Can Keep Your Case Open

Some trustees will keep bankruptcy cases open long after the discharge is granted. The intent behind this tactic is that real estate values might increase beyond the protected amount, meaning the trustee can sell the property for a larger profit.

Trustees also have the ability to give up any asset. This requires a formal notice of their intent to abandon their rights. Once your case is closed, the assets are automatically abandoned. However, you might need to file a Motion to Compel Abandonment if your case drags on.

While bankruptcy might seem simple, it can become a complicated matter very quickly. This why it is important to have strong, experienced legal representation. At Atlas Consumer Law, our bankruptcy lawyers are aggressive and passionate when it comes to protecting the rights and interests of our clients.

Contact our Chicago team of bankruptcy attorneys, or call (312) 313-1613 for your free consultation.