North Carolina Bankruptcy Exemptions

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 15, 2021

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Assets Exemption State Statutes
Homestead Property held as tenancy by the entirety may be exempt against debts owed by only one spouse. In re Chandler, 148 B.R. 13 (E.D. N.C. 1992)
  Real or personal property, including co-op, used as residence to $35,000 (husband and wife may double) ($60,000 if 65 or older and spouse is deceased); up to $5,000 of unused portion of homestead may be applied to any property. 1C-1601 (a)(1),(2)
Insurance Employee group life policy or proceeds. 58-58-165
  Fraternal benefit society benefits. 58-24-85
  Life insurance on spouse or children. N.C. Const. art. X § 5 1C-1601 (a)(6)
Misc. Alimony, support, separate maintenance, and child support reasonably necessary for support of debtor or dependents. 1C-1601 (a)(12)
  Support received by a surviving spouse for 1 year, up to $30,000. 30-15 1C-1601 (a)(12)
Pensions Firefighters & rescue squad workers. 58-86-90
  IRAs, Roth IRAs. 1C-1601 (a)(9)
  Law enforcement officers. 143-166.30 (g)
  Legislators. 120-4.29
  Municipal, city, & county employees. 128-31
  Retirement benefits from other states to extent exempt in that state. 1C-1601 (a)(11)
  Teachers & state employees. 135-9 135-95
Personal Property 529 College Savings Accounts to $25,000. 1C-1601 (a)(10)
  Animals, crops, musical instruments, books, clothing, appliances, household goods & furnishings to $5,000 total; may add $1,000 per dependent, up to $4,000 total additional (all property must have been purchased at least 90 days before filing). 1C-1601 (a)(4),(d)
  Burial plot to $18,500, in lieu of homestead. 1C-1601 (a)(1)
  Health aids. 1C-1601 (a)(7)
  Motor vehicle to $3,500. 1C-1601 (a)(3)
  Personal injury and wrongful death recoveries for person you depended on. 1C-1601 (a)(8)
Public Benefits Aid to blind. 111-18
  Crime victims’ compensation. 15B-17
  Public adult assistance under Work First Program. 108A-36
  Unemployment compensation. 96-17
  Workers’ compensation. 97-21
Tools of Your Trade Implements, books, and tools of trade to $2,000. 1C-1601 (a)(5)
Wages Earned but unpaid wages received 60 days before filing for bankruptcy, needed for support. 1-362
Wildcard $5,000 less any amount claimed for homestead or burial exemption, of any property. 1C-1601 (a)(2)
  $500 of any personal property. N.C. Const. art. X § 1

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