Many of Tennessee’s most common bankruptcy exemptions are listed below. Under Tennessee law, only the state’s exemption system may be used when filing bankruptcy. Exemption amounts may be higher for married couples.

• Homestead (equity in dwelling used as residence)
– Up to $5,000
– Up to $25,000 if you have a minor child dependent
– Up to at least $12,500 if over 65
• Personal property
– Clothing
– Bible, school books, family pictures and portraits
– Health aids
– Burial plot of up to 1 acre
• Tools of the trade
– Up to $1,900 in professional books, implements, and tools
• Wages
– Minimum of 75% of earned but unpaid wages, additional money for each child
• Insurance
– Life insurance or annuity policies/benefits
– Accident/health/disability benefits for TN residents
– Disability/illness benefits
– Fraternal benefit society benefits
– Up to $5,000 in homeowners’ insurance proceeds
• Pensions
– Tax exempt retirement accounts
– ERISA benefits
– Public employee, state, and local government pensions
• Public benefits
Unemployment benefits
– Workers’ compensation
– Public assistance
– Crime victims’ compensation*
– Relocation assistance
– Veterans’ benefits
Social security
• Alimony and child support
– Alimony or child support owed within 30 days of filing
• Other
– Health savings accounts
– Educational trust funds and prepayment plans
– Business partnership property
– Up to $7,500 in personal injury recoveries*
– Up to $10,000 in wrongful death recoveries*
• Wildcard (exemption for property of your choice)
– Up to $10,000 in personal property
* Total of personal injury, wrongful death, and crime victims’ compensation cannot exceed $15,000

Do I Need a Bankruptcy Lawyer?

If you are filing for bankruptcy in Tennessee, it is important to make sure that it is filed correctly and in compliance with state laws. A bankruptcy attorney can help you make sure that you claim all of the appropriate exemptions, and help you protect your property by avoiding filing mistakes.