Hawaii Bankruptcy Exemptions

Federal bankruptcy exemptions are available for the State of Hawaii.

There is property that you can exempt or protect from creditors when you file bankruptcy. You have the option of utilizing the state exemptions or the federal exemptions. After you file for bankruptcy, this property can be kept. Be aware that there are certain debts, which you will not be able to erase in bankruptcy. These are identified as non-dischargeable debts.

For married couples filing jointly in bankruptcy, each can claim a full set of exemptions, unless otherwise noted.

A debtor must generally pay the trustee the value of the non-exempt property to keep the property.


Homestead: Head of family or over 65 to $30,000; all others to $20,000; property cannot exceed 1 acre. Sale proceeds exempt for 6 months after sale. Property held as tenancy by the entirety may be exempt against debts owed by only one spouse.

Insurance: Fraternal benefit society benefits, Disability benefits, Group life insurance policy or proceeds, Life or health insurance policy for spouse or child, Life insurance proceeds from being used to pay beneficiary’s creditors, Annuity contract or endowment policy proceeds if beneficiary is insured’s spouse, child, or parent. Accident, sickness or health benefits

Pensions: Firefighters, Police officers, Public officers and employees, ERISA-qualified benefits deposited over 3 years before filing bankruptcy, ROTH IRAs and traditional IRAs up to $1,095,000, Tax-exempt accounts

Miscellaneous: Property of business partnership

Personal Property: Clothing and books, Appliances and furnishings needed, Burial plot to 250 square feet plus tombstones, monuments and fencing on site, Housing down payments for home in state project, Motor vehicle to $2,575, Jewelry and articles of adornment to $1,000, Proceeds for sold or damaged exempt property; proceeds exempt for 6 months

Public Assistance: Unemployment compensation, Workers’ compensation, Unemployment work relief funds to $60 per month, Public assistance paid by Department of Health Services for work done in home or workshop. Crime victims’ compensation; special accounts that were created to limit the commercial exploitation of crimes, Temporary disability benefits

Tools of Trade: Tools, implements, books, instruments, uniforms, furnishings, fishing, boat, nets, motor vehicle, and other personal property needed for livelihood

Wages: Unpaid wages due for services of past 31 days, Prisoner’s wages held by Department of Public Safety

Wildcard: None

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