The New Hampshire Homestead Exemption

New Hampshire's homestead exemption allows you to protect up to $120,000 of your home equity if you file for bankruptcy -- and more if you are a married couple filing jointly.

New Hampshire's homestead exemption allows you to protect up to $120,000 of equity in your home, and twice that amount if you are a married couple filing jointly (as of December 2016). Read on to learn more about the homestead exemption in New Hampshire.

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.

The New Hampshire Homestead Exemption Amount

Under the New Hampshire exemption system, homeowners may exempt up to $120,000  of their home or other property covered by the homestead exemption.

Doubling for Married Couples

New Hampshire allows married couples to double their exemptions in jointly owned property. Therefore, if a married couple files joint bankruptcy and own their home together, they can each take the full $120,000 exemption, giving a total exemption of $240,000.

The Scope of the New Hampshire Homestead Exemption

In New Hampshire, the homestead exemption applies to real property, including your home, condominium or manufactured housing, as well as the land on which the dwelling is situated if the debtor owns that as well.  

Can You Use the Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions in New Hampshire?

In New Hampshire,  you can use either the state exemption system or the  federal bankruptcy exemption  system (but you can’t pick and choose different exemptions from each system – you have to use all state exemptions or all federal exemptions.)

The federal bankruptcy homestead exemption amount is $23,675. (This figure is accurate as of April 2016. It will change again after March 31, 2019. For the most recent figure, see The Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions.) The exemption may be used for homes, condos, co-ops, mobile homes, and burial plots. Married couples may double this exemption. You can find the federal bankruptcy homestead exemption at 11 U.S.C. §522(d)(1) and (5).

(To learn more about which state exemptions apply to you, see  Which Exemptions Can You Use in Bankruptcy?)

Homestead Declarations

In New Hampshire, the homestead exemption is automatic – you don’t have to file a homestead declaration in order to claim the homestead exemption in bankruptcy.

Finding the New Hampshire Homestead Exemption Statute

New Hampshire's homestead exemption is found in the New Hampshire state statutes at  N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 480:1. You can find the statutes on the website of the New Hampshire State Legislature at  www.gencourt.state.nh.us.  To learn how to find state statutes, check out Nolo’s  Laws and Legal Research  area.

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