The Maryland Homestead Exemption

If you live in Maryland and file for bankruptcy, the Maryland homestead exemption protects equity in your home. Learn more.

By , Attorney · University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law

In bankruptcy, a homestead exemption protects equity in your home. Here you'll find specific information about the homestead exemption in Maryland. For general information about how the homestead exemption works in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, read The Homestead Exemption in Bankruptcy. You'll find detailed information about Maryland bankruptcies in How to File Bankruptcy in Maryland.

How Much Is the Homestead Exemption in a Maryland Bankruptcy?

In Maryland, you'll use Maryland's state exemptions because the federal bankruptcy exemptions aren't available (some states allow residents to choose between the two sets). We've listed Maine's homestead amount below. Contact a local bankruptcy lawyer for current amounts and to find out about filing considerations for spouses.

Maryland Homestead Exemption

Homestead exemption amount


Can spouses who file a joint bankruptcy double the exemption?


Homestead exemption law

S.C. Code Ann. §§ 15-41-30(A)(1)(a), (b)

Other information

Amounts are subject to change.

Where to find other exemptions.

Filing for Bankruptcy in Maryland

Federal Nonbankruptcy Exemptions

What Property Is Protected by the Maryland Homestead Exemption?

In Maryland, the homestead exemption applies to real property, including your home, condominium, or co-op. You must own and occupy the property in order to protect it. The homestead exemption also applies to a manufactured home you have converted to real property by permanently affixing it to the land.

Example 1. If you own a house worth $120,000 and have a mortgage balance of $100,000, you have $20,000 of equity in the property. If you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can use the Maryland homestead exemption to protect all equity.

Example 2. Assume your mortgage is only $20,000 and could only exempt $25,000 of your $100,000 of equity. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee would likely sell your house, give you $25,000 for your exemption, and use any amount remaining after deducting sales costs to pay unsecured creditors. If you wanted to keep the home, you could file for Chapter 13 and pay the $75,000 nonexempt equity portion to unsecured creditors through the Chapter 13 plan.

When Can You Claim the Maryland Homestead Exemption in Bankruptcy?

You can file for bankruptcy in Maryland after living there for more than 180 days. However, you must live in Maryland much longer before using Maryland exemptions—at least 730 days before filing, to be exact. Otherwise, you'd use the previous state's exemptions.

But suppose you lived in multiple states during the two years before filing for bankruptcy. In that case, you'd use the exemptions of the state you lived in for most of the 180 days before the two-year period immediately preceding your filing. (11 U.S.C. § 522(b)(3)(A).) Learn more about filing for bankruptcy after moving to a new state.

You'll also need to meet other timing and exemption requirements to prevent losing your home in bankruptcy. Find out more about keeping your home in Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 or consult a bankruptcy lawyer.

Finding the Maryland Bankruptcy Homestead Exemption Statute

You'll find Maryland's homestead exemption in the Maryland Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 11-504(f)(1)(i)(2) on the General Assembly of Maryland website. Still, the best way to protect your assets and determine the current homestead exemption amount is by consulting a local bankruptcy lawyer.

Need More Bankruptcy Help?

Did you know Nolo has made the law easy for over fifty years? It's true, and we want to ensure you find what you need. Below you'll find more articles explaining how bankruptcy works. And don't forget that our bankruptcy homepage is the best place to start if you have other questions!

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Helpful Bankruptcy Sites

Department of Justice U.S. Trustee Program

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We wholeheartedly encourage research and learning, but online articles can't address all bankruptcy issues or the facts of your case. The best way to protect your assets in bankruptcy is by hiring a local bankruptcy lawyer.

Updated September 21, 2023

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