Pennsylvania Bankruptcy Exemptions

Debtors in Pennsylvania may claim either State or Federal exemptions.

In general, a debtor may claim exemption of certain personal property from attachment or execution or forced sale for the payment of debts. The Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes contains no provision for homestead exemption.

Pennsylvania does not permit waiver of the exemptions from attachment or execution granted by statute by the debtor by express or implied contract before or after the commencement of the matter, the entry of judgment or otherwise. 42 Pa. Consol. Stat. § 8122.

  • A judgment debtor generally is entitled to exemption from execution certain general monetary exemptions up to $300 in bank notes, money, securities, real property, judgments or other indebtedness due the judgment debtor. 42 Pa. Consol. Stat. § 8123.

Particular enumerated items of personal property which may be exempt may include goods such as:

  • Wearing apparel,

  • Bibles and school books,

  • Sewing machines belonging to seamstresses or used and owned by private families, but not including sewing machines kept for sale or hire, and

  • Uniforms and accouterments;

  • Qualified retirement funds and accounts,

  • Pension or annuity,

  • Insurance proceeds,

  • Social security benefits, and

  • Workers' compensation benefits. 42 Pa. Consol. Stat. § 8124.

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