Mississippi Bankruptcy Exemptions

January 23, 2017

Like all states, Mississippi has its own set of exemptions that you can use when filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Exemptions determine what property (such as a home, car, instrument, retirement account, etc.) you may keep in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and how much you must pay to certain creditors in Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Some states allow debtors to choose between the state exemption system and a set of federal bankruptcy exemptions, but Mississippi is not one of them. In Mississippi, you must use the state exemptions below. In addition to this list, you may also use any applicable amounts in the federal nonbankruptcy exemptions. In many cases, a married couple filing jointly in Mississippi can double the exemption amount.

To learn more about bankruptcy exemptions, including how they work, which state exemption system you should use, and special rules for the homestead exemption, see Bankruptcy Exemptions – What Can I Keep When I File for Bankruptcy? 

Mississippi Bankruptcy Exemptions

Unless otherwise noted, all law references are to the Mississippi Code Annotated (Miss. Code Ann.).

Homestead

85-3-21 & 85-3-23 - Property you own and occupy to $75,000, but cannot exceed 160 acres. You may claim a former residence if you are over 60 and married or widowed. Sale proceeds are also exempt. A mobile home may qualify for exemption if you own land on which it is located. May file homestead declaration. Married couples can double only if they are living in separate residences.

Personal Property

85-3-1- Mobile home up to $30,000. State health savings plans. Tax-qualified 529 education savings plans, including those under the Mississippi Prepaid Affordable College Tuition Program. Proceeds from exempt property. Tangible personal property of the following items up to a cumulative total of $10,000: any item worth less than $200 each, clothing, furniture, appliances, 1 radio and 1 television, 1 firearm, 1 lawn mower, linens, china, crockery, kitchenware, and personal effects (including wedding rings) of the debtor and dependents (but not works of art, other electronic entertainment equipment, jewelry (other than wedding rings), and items acquired as antiques), books, animals, crops, motor vehicles, cash on hand, health aids.

85-3-17 - Personal injury judgments up to $10,000.

Wages

85-3-4 - Earned but unpaid wages owed for 30 days; after 30 days, the greater of the following: minimum 75% of unpaid weekly earnings or 30 times the federal minimum hourly wage; judge may allow more for low-income debtors.

Pensions

11 U.S.C. § 522 - Tax exempt retirement accounts (including 401(k)s, 403(b)s, profit sharing and money purchase plans, SEP and SIMPLE IRAs, and defined benefit plans). 

11 U.S.C. § 522(b)(3)(C)(n) - IRAS and Roth IRAs to $1,283,025.

21-29-51, 21-29-257 & 21-29-307 - Municipal employee benefits.

25-11-129 - State retirement benefits.

25-11-201 - Teacher retirement benefits.

25-13-31 & 25-14-5 - Public officer and employee retirement benefits and deferred compensation.

85-3-1(e) - IRAs, Keoghs, and ERISA-qualified benefits, if deposited more than 1 year before filing.

Public Benefits

43-3-71 - Assistance to the blind.

43-9-19 - Assistance to the aged.

43-29-15 - Assistance to individuals with a disability.

71-3-43 - Workers' compensation.

71-5-539 - Unemployment compensation (cannot comingle with other funds).

85-3-1(i), (j), (k) - Earned income tax credits and state and federal tax refunds up to $5,000 each.

99-41-23(7) - Crime victims' compensation.

Insurance

83-7-5 - Life insurance or annuity proceeds held by the insurer.

83-29-39 - Fraternal benefit society benefits.

85-3-1(b)(ii) - Disability benefits.

85-3-23 - Homeowners' insurance proceeds up to $75,000 (plus $250 in personal property).

Wildcard

85-3-1(h) - $50,000 of any property, including monetary deposits, available to a Mississippi resident who is at least 70 years old.

Other 

Add any applicable Federal Nonbankruptcy Exemptions.

Confirming Exemptions

This list includes the majority of bankruptcy exemptions available in Mississippi. However, it may not include all exemptions, and states often create exceptions to specific exemptions. In addition, Mississippi may have changed the amounts since this list was last updated. Consider checking with your local bankruptcy court or bankruptcy attorney. 

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