A Comparison of New York and Federal Asset Exemption Laws

Asset

New York Exemption

Federal Exemption

Homestead (principal Residence)

 

*amount of equity that is exempt

$150,000 (Kings, New York, Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland, Westchester, Putnam)

$125,000 (Dutchess, Albany, Columbia, Orange, Saratoga, Ulster)

$75,000 (all other counties in New York)

$21,625
“Wildcard”

*can be used on any asset

$1,000 if no homestead exemption is used

*only available  if homestead is not used

$10,825 (only if homestead is not used)
Cash$5,000

*only if homestead is not used

$1,150

 

Tools of the Trade$3,000$2,175
Watch and Jewelry$1,000$1,450
Books$500
Domestic Animals$1,000
Household Items$5,000$11,525

*no item can exceed $525

*includes Books and Domestic Animals

Life Insurance PolicyUnlimitedUnlimited

*whole life insurance limited to $11,525

Payment on Wrongful Death of claim of individual whom debtor was a dependantUnlimitedUnlimited
Personal Injury Award$7,500$21,625

*not including pain and suffering

Award for compensation of future earnings

*includes award for individual who debtor is or was a dependant

UnlimitedUnlimited
Annuity Contracts

 

Unlimited

*Must be reasonably necessary for support of Debtor

Unlimited
Pensions and Retirement PlansUnlimitedUnlimited if in a tax exempt fund