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Kansas Homestead Laws

The prospect of bankruptcy can be frightening to a debtor. Maybe you wanted to be able to pay your debts, but due to unforeseen circumstances, such as a serious medical problem, a few bad crop years in a row, or a failed business, you just can’t. Fortunately, state and federal laws protect you from losing everything in a bankruptcy. One of the things you can sometimes keep through bankruptcy or a non-bankruptcy workout is your home or homestead.

Kansas is one of the few states that has an unlimited homestead exemption. However, property values are affected by the maximum acreage limit in both urban and rural environments. If you’re thinking of moving to Kansas to file for bankruptcy, think again. To claim Kansas’ homestead protection laws in some cases, you can’t have bought your home in the last 40 months (3 years and 4 months) and must have lived in the state for at least 2 years. You may have to use the law of your prior state, which could place limits on your homestead exemption or you may have to use the federal exemption if no state applies.

The chart below outlines the main homestead protection laws in Kansas.

Code Sections Kansas Statutes Sections 60-2301: Homestead, Extent of Exemption and 60-2302: Designation of Homestead
Kansas Constitution Article 15, Section 9: Homestead Exemption
What is Homestead Property? Your homestead in Kansas can be any real and personal property, including your home, manufactured home, or mobile home.
Maximum Property Value That Can Be Designated Homestead Kansas has no property value maximum that can be designated homestead. However, they do have a maximum acreage amount that would effectively limit the property value saved.
Maximum Acreage Depending on the location of the homestead property, the maximum acres that can be claimed as homestead vary. Properties located in incorporated towns or cities can be claimed exempt up to a maximum of one acre. However, in rural areas, you can claim up to 160 acres of farming land as your homestead.
Personal Property Exemptions In addition to your homestead, you can claim several personal property exemptions, some related to farmland. These exemptions include:
  • Furnishings, equipment, food, fuel, and clothing in your possession as reasonably necessary to keep you for a period of one year
  • $1,000 in ornaments or jewelry
  • $20,000 for your transportation to and from work (typically a car or truck), for people with disabilities a specially designed or equipped vehicle has no max exemption limit
  • $7,500 in trade tools, such as breeding stock, seed, tools, books, etc. that you need to carry out your occupation
  • A burial plot

Bankruptcy laws can be confusing. If you have questions about how bankruptcy could work for you, you should speak to an experienced Kansas debtor-creditor lawyer.

Note: State laws are updated frequently, please contact a lawyer or conduct your own legal research to verify these bankruptcy-related laws.

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