Minnesota Bankruptcy Exemptions

Find out what property you can protect in bankruptcy with Minnesota's bankruptcy exemptions.

January 23, 2017

If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Minnesota, you can protect some or all of your property with Minnesota’s bankruptcy exemptions. The bankruptcy exemptions also play a role in Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Read on to learn about property covered by Minnesota law.

Minnesota Allows Debtors to Choose Between State and Federal Exemptions

Minnesota is one of the few states that allow debtors to choose between state and  federal bankruptcy exemptions. A bankruptcy filer can examine both sets of exemptions and select the exemption scheme that better protects their assets.

Common Minnesota Exemptions

Here are some of the most common exemptions available under Minnesota Statutes (Minn. Stat.).


The Minnesota homestead exemption protects up to $390,000 of equity in your home and land or up to $975,000 of equity if your land is used for agricultural purposes (up to 160 acres). The homestead exemption also allows you to protect insurance proceeds for damage to your home or proceeds from the sale of your home for up to one year after the sale, up to the maximum amount of the homestead exemption. You cannot double the homestead exemption.   § § 510.01, 510.02

Minnesota law also protects the full value of a manufactured home, if you live in it.   § 550.37, subd. 12

Employee Benefits

You can protect up to $69,000 of employee present or future payments under a stock, bonus, pension, profit-sharing, individual retirement account, Roth IRA, individual retirement annuity, simplified employee pension, or similar plan or contract on account of illness, disability, death, age, or length of service, plus any additional amount reasonably needed for the filer's support. Minn. Stat. §550.37, subd. 24.

Motor Vehicle

The Minnesota motor vehicle exemption allows you to exempt up to $4,600 in one motor vehicle. If the motor vehicle has been modified at the cost of at least $3,450 to accommodate a disabled person, you may exempt up to $46,000 in the vehicle.  Minn. Stat. §550.37, subd. 12a

Personal Property

You may exempt the following personal property:

  • clothing, one watch, utensils, and food
  • appliances, furniture, radio, and television, up to $10,350
  • wedding rings, up to $2,817.50
  • tools of your trade or business, farm implements, livestock, produce, or crops up to $11,500,  
  • farm machines, up to $13,000,  
  • teachers' books and equipment, and
  • burial plot or church pew or seat.

Minn. Stat. §550.37 subds. 3-8

Insurance Benefits

Insurance proceeds from the death or a spouse or parent, up to $46,000, plus an additional $11,500 for each dependent of the surviving spouse or child. Minn. Stat. § 550.37 subd. 10

Insurance proceeds from loss of or damage to exempt property. Minn. Stat. § 550.37 subd. 9

Personal injury or wrongful death recovery for injury to yourself or your relative. Minn. Stat. § 550.37 subd. 16

Insurance policy up to $9,200.  Minn. Stat. § 550.37 subd. 23

Assistance & Benefits

100% of public assistance benefits. Minn. Stat.   § 550.37, subd. 14

Unemployment benefits. Minn. Stat.   § 268.192(2)

Worker’s compensation benefits. Minn. Stat.   § 176.175(2)

Veteran’s benefits. Minn. Stat. § 550.38


Minnesota law protects up to 75% of your gross earnings, or 40 times the federal minimum hourly wage per week (whichever is greater). Minn. Stat. § 550.37, subd. 13

For more information about wage garnishment in Minnesota, check out our article on  Minnesota Wage Garnishment Law.

Confirming Minnesota’s Bankruptcy Exemptions

Minnesota’s exemption amounts are adjusted in even numbered years, as long as the amounts have changed at least 10%. To make sure you have the most recent figures, be sure to check for any updates at the official website of the Minnesota Legislature.  

For additional information on how to research and find the latest exemption amounts, see our  Legal Research Center.

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