Alaska Bankruptcy Exemptions

Updated December 12, 2018

Like all states, Alaska has its own set of exemptions that you can use when filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Exemptions tell you the property you can protect when you file for bankruptcy, such as a home, car, instrument, or retirement account. What will happen to your nonexempt property will depend on the type of property you file.

  • Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee sells nonexempt property and distributes the funds to creditors.
  • Chapter 13 bankruptcy. You keep all of your property in Chapter 13; however, you’ll pay the value of your nonexempt property or your disposable income, whichever is greater, in a three- or five-year repayment plan.

Find out more about the two bankruptcy chapters by reading When Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Better Than Chapter 13?

Alaska Bankruptcy Exemptions

If a couple is married and filing jointly in Alaska, each spouse may claim the full amount of each exemption for any property in which they both have an ownership interest (informally called “doubling”).

Unless otherwise noted, all law references are to the Alaska Statutes.

Homestead Exemption

09.38.010 - Up to $72,900. Joint owners may each claim a portion, but the total may not exceed $72,900.

Personal Property Including the Motor Vehicle Exemption

09.38.010 - Apartment or condominium owners' association deposits.

9.38.015 - Burial plot; needed health aids; money held in mortgage escrow accounts after July 1, 2008; and tuition credits under advance college payment contract.

9.38.020 - Motor vehicle up to $4,050, if market value is no more than $27,000; pets up to $1,350; jewelry up to $1,350; and household goods, clothing, books, musical instruments, and family portraits and heirlooms up to $4,050.

9.38.030 - Personal injury and wrongful death recoveries, to the extent wages are exempt; cash or other liquid assets up to $1,890 or $2,970 for the sole wage earner with some restrictions.

9.38.060 - Proceeds from damaged, destroyed or lost exempt property.

34.35.105 - Building materials.

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.

9.38.015 - Teachers, judicial & public employees, and elected officers, as to benefits accruing.

9.38.017 - ERISA-qualified benefits, if deposited more than 120 days before filing; medical savings accounts.

9.38.030 - Payments being received from other pensions.

Public Benefits

9.38.015 - Alaska longevity bonus, crime victims' compensation, and federally exempt public benefits. Prescription drug benefits for senior care. Alaska benefits for low-income seniors. Unemployment compensation.

23.30.160 - Workers' compensation.

43.23.065 - 20% of Permanent Fund dividends (this is income distributed to residents from the state's natural resources).

47.25.210 - General relief assistance.

47.25.550 - Assistance to blind, elderly and disabled adults:

Tools of Trade

9.38.020 - Implements, books or tools up to $3,780.

Alimony and Child Support

9.38.015 - Child support if received from a collection agency.

9.38.030 - Alimony, to extent wages are exempt.

Insurance

9.38.015 & 9.38.030 - Medical, surgical, and hospital benefits. Disability benefits.

9.38.025(a) – Unmatured life insurance or annuity contracts to a total of $13,500.

21.84.240 - Fraternal benefit society benefits.

Other

9.38.015 - Liquor licenses.

9.38.100 - Business partnership property.

When using the state exemptions, you can add any applicable Federal Nonbankruptcy Exemptions, too.

Selecting State or Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions

Some states allow debtors to choose between the state exemption system and a set of federal bankruptcy exemptions, including Alaska (given conflict in Alaskan law, you’ll want to check with a local bankruptcy attorney for clarification).

You can find the federal exemption amounts in Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions. You cannot mix and match between the state and federal lists. If you choose to use the state exemptions, you may also use any applicable amounts in the federal nonbankruptcy exemptions.

Confirming Exemptions

This list includes the majority of bankruptcy exemptions available in Alaska. However, not all exemptions are included, and changes could have been made since this list was last updated. Consider verifying the exemptions available to you with your local bankruptcy court or an attorney.

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

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