State Exemption Laws

Exempt property is property that creditors are not allowed to take to satisfy a judgment.  Many of these laws date back to the Great Depression and were introduced to help those who were bankrupt to rebuild their lives.
The theory supporting this Depression-era legislation was that, if all that was left post-bankruptcy were the clothes on one’s back, it would be difficult to return to society as a productive member.  At the same time, state legislatures had to balance this public policy goal against the legitimate right of creditors to be repaid.  As a result, the type and value of property that is exempt varies greatly from state to state.
Today, most states will protect to some degree a person’s primary home, retirement plans, life insurance, annuities, college savings plans, wage accounts, and personal property.  What follows below is a list of State and Federal Exempt Property Laws.  The first step in asset protection planning is to review the property you own to see what exemptions may apply.  Simply follow the links below to find the law in your state.  Please note that Federal exemption law may apply in a bankruptcy or if you are domiciled in a U.S. possession or territory.
DISCLAIMER:  Exemption laws often change by legislative amendment or court rulings.  The links below may not reflect the most current law in your state.  We make no representation about the accuracy of the information linked to for your state.