Illinois Exemptions to Bankruptcy

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Author: Samuel Z. Goldfarb, LAF
Last updated: August 2010

Type of Property Amount of Exemption Controlling Statute
Residence or homestead of individual. Includes farm, lot
and buildings, condominium, mobile home or cooperative.
Can be owned or leased.
$15,000 735 IL Compiled Statutes

(735 ILCS 5/12-906
includes proceeds of sale
for 1 year)
Necessary wearing apparel, bible, school books and family
pictures. Prescribed health aids of debtor and dependents.
100% 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(a)
735 ILCS 5/12-1001(e)
Any personal property of the debtor $4,000 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(b)
One motor vehicle $2,400 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(c)
Implements, professional books, tools of trade $1,500 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(d)
Proceeds and cash value of life insurance policies and
annuity contracts payable to dependent of insured
100% 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(f)
Public benefits: social security, unemployment
compensation, public assistance, veteran's and disability
and illness benefits
100% 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(g)
(1), (2), (3)
Alimony, support or separate maintenance Amount reasonably
necessary to support
debtor and dependents.
735 ILCS 5/12-1001(g)(4)
Crime victim's reparation awards 100% 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(h)(1)
Wrongful death payments as a result of the death of a
person who supported the debtor
Amount reasonably
necessary to support
735 ILCS 5/12-1001(h)(2)
Life insurance payments from a policy insuring a person
who supported the debtor
Amount reasonably
necessary to support
debtor and dependents.
735 ILCS 5/12-1001(h)(3)
Payments on account of bodily injury to the debtor or a
person who supported the debtor
$15,000 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(h)(4)
Restitution payments made under Federal Civil Liberties
Act of 1988 and the Aleutian and Pribilof Island
Restitution Act
100% 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(h)(5)
NOTE: The exemptions in 735 ILCS 5/12-1001(h) extend for 2 years after the debtor has obtained the right to 
receive the payments. Property traceable to these payments is exempted for 5 years after the debtor has
received the payment.
Proceeds from the sale of exempt property are also exempt. Nonexempt property which is converted into
exempt property in fraud of creditors is not exempt. Property acquired within 6 months of the filing of
bankruptcy is presumed to have been acquired in contemplation of bankruptcy. 735 ILCS 5/12-1001.
Gross earnings or disposable earnings (i.e., gross earnings
less deductions required by law

85% of gross earnings.
OR disposable earnings
equal to 45 times the
federal minimum hourly
wage per week,
whichever is greater.

735 ILCS5/12-803     
Proceeds and cash value of life or endowment insurance
policy or annuity contract payable to insured's spouse or
(applies against creditors
of insured)
215 ILCS 5/238
Fraternal Benefit Society's benefits 100% 215 ILCS 5/239.1a
Workmen's compensation benefits 100% 820 ILCS 305/21
Public welfare benefits 100% 305 ILCS 5/11-3
Property held in trust for the debtor 100% 735 ILCS 5/2-1403
Unemployment compensation benefits 100% (support claims
820 ILCS 405/1300         
Retirement funds                                                     100%                      735 ILCS 5/12-1006                   

735 ILCS 5/12-1201 prohibits the use of federal bankruptcy exemptions listed in 11 U.S.C. 522(d).                      


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