In bankruptcy, a homestead exemption protects equity in your home. Here you’ll find specific information about the homestead exemption in Nebraska.
For information about how the homestead exemption works in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, see The Homestead Exemption in Bankruptcy. For more articles on exemptions, see our Bankruptcy Exemptions area.
Under the Nebraska exemption system, homeowners who are the head of household or who are unmarried and over the age of 65 may exempt up to $60,000 of their home or other property covered by the homestead exemption. If the property is in a city or village, it cannot exceed two lots; if the property is not in a city or village, the property cannot exceed 160 acres.
In some states, married couples who file joint bankruptcy can double their exemptions. Nebraska prohibits doubling, however; married couples are limited to $60,000 total homestead exemption.
In Nebraska, the homestead exemption applies to real property, including your home, condominium or mobile home, as well as any appurtenances and the land on which the property is situated, within the acreage and lot limits described above.
The homestead exemption also applies to home sale proceeds for up to six months after the sale of your home.
Some states allow bankruptcy filers to use the federal bankruptcy exemptions instead of the state exemptions. Nebraska is not one of those states. If you reside in Nebraska, you must use the state exemptions.
(To learn more about which state exemptions apply to you, see Which Exemptions Can You Use in Bankruptcy?)
In Nebraska, you may file a homestead declaration (a form filed with the county recorder’s office to put on record your right to a homestead exemption) before you file for bankruptcy in order to claim the homestead exemption, but it is not required. Contact your county recorder for information on how to file a homestead declaration.
The Nebraska homestead exemption is only available to married couples, unmarried people who can claim to be head of household, or unmarried people over the age of 65. If you are not married, not head of a household, and younger than 65 years of age, you cannot use the Nebraska homestead exemption.
Nebraska's homestead exemption is found in the Nebraska state statutes at Neb. Rev. Stat. 40-101 through 40-116. You can find Nebraska's state statutes on the Nebraska Legislature's website at www.legislature.ne.gov. To learn how to find state statutes, check out Nolo’s Laws and Legal Research area.