Wyoming Bankruptcy Laws : Wyoming State Exemptions

Complete state of Wyoming bankruptcy exemptions laws which protect a debtor’s property when personal bankruptcy is filed.

1-20-101. Homestead exemption; right and amount.
Every resident of the state is entitled to a homestead not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00) in value, exempt from execution and attachment arising from any debt, contract or civil obligation entered into or incurred.

1-20-102. Homestead exemption; when operative.

(a) The homestead is only exempt as provided in W.S. 1-20-101 while occupied as such by the owner or the person entitled thereto, or his or her family.
(b) When two (2) or more persons jointly own and occupy the same residence, each shall be entitled to the homestead exemption.
1-20-104. Homestead exemption; composition.
The homestead may consist of a house and lot or lots in any town or city, or a farm consisting of any number of acres, or a house trailer or other movable home, whether or not equipped with wheels or resting upon immovable support, the value of which does not exceed six thousand dollars ($6,000.00).

1-15-511. Limitation on continuing garnishment.

(a) The maximum portion of the aggregate disposable earnings of a judgment debtor which are subject to continuing garnishment under this article is the lesser of:

(i) Twenty-five percent (25%) of the judgment debtor’s disposable earnings for that week; or
(ii) The amount by which the judgment debtor’s aggregate disposable earnings computed for that week exceeds thirty (30) times the federal minimum hourly wage prescribed by the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, 29 U.S.C. 206(a)(1), in effect at the time the earnings are payable, or, in case of earnings for any pay period other than a week, any equivalent multiple thereof prescribed by the administrator of the Wyoming Uniform Consumer Credit Code in the manner provided by W.S. 40-14-505(b)(iii).
1-20-105. Wearing apparel.
The necessary wearing apparel of every person not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) in value, determined in the manner provided in W.S. 1-20-106 is exempt from levy or sale upon execution, writ of attachment or any process issuing out of any court in this state. Necessary wearing apparel shall not include jewelry of any type other than wedding rings.

1-20-106. Exemption of other personal property; personalty used in livelihood; appraisement.

(a) The following property, when owned by any person, is exempt from levy or sale upon execution, writ of attachment or any process issuing out of any court in this state and shall continue to be exempt while the person or the family of the person is moving from one (1) place of residence to another in this state:

(i) The family bible, pictures and school books;
(ii) A lot in any cemetery or burial ground;
(iii) Furniture, bedding, provisions and other household articles of any kind or character as the debtor may select, not exceeding in all the value of two thousand dollars ($2,000.00). When two (2) or more persons occupy the same residence, each shall be entitled to a separate exemption;
(iv) A motor vehicle not exceeding in value two thousand four hundred dollars ($2,400.00).

(b) The tools, team, implements or stock in trade of any person, used and kept for the purpose of carrying on his trade or business, not exceeding in value two thousand dollars ($2,000.00), or the library, instruments and implements of any professional person, not exceeding in value two thousand dollars ($2,000.00), are exempt from levy or sale upon execution, writ of attachment or any process out of any court in this state.
(c) The value of the property selected by any debtor shall be ascertained by the appraisement of three (3) disinterested appraisers, to be selected and summoned by the officer claiming to levy upon, attach or sell the property. The appraisers shall be sworn by the officer to make a true appraisement of the value of the property.

1-20-110. Exemption for retirement funds and accounts.

(a) The following are exempt from execution, attachment, garnishment or any other process issued by any court:

(i) Any person’s interest in a retirement plan, pension or annuity, whether by way of a gratuity or otherwise, granted, paid or payable:

(A) By any private corporation or employer to an employee or a retired employee under a plan or contract which provides that the pension or annuity shall not be assignable; or
(B) To any city, town or county employee or retired employee who is not covered by the state retirement system, under a plan or contract which provides that the pension or annuity shall not be assignable.

(ii) Any retirement or annuity fund of any person, to the extent of payments made to the fund while solvent, but not exceeding the amount actually excluded or deducted as retirement funding for federal income tax purposes, and the appreciation thereon, the income therefrom and the benefits or annuity payable thereunder;
(iii) Any retirement or annuity fund of any person, to the extent payments are made to the fund while solvent, provided the earnings on the fund are protected from federal income tax or subject to deferral of federal income tax, or are not subject to federal income tax upon withdrawal, and the appreciation thereon, the income therefrom and the benefits or annuity payable thereunder; and
(iv) All property in this state of the judgment debtor where the judgment is in favor of any state or any political subdivision of any state for failure to pay that state’s or political subdivision’s income tax on benefits received from a pension or other retirement plan. This paragraph shall apply only to judgments obtained after the judgment debtor has established residency in Wyoming and has been domiciled in Wyoming for at least one hundred eighty (180) days.

1-20-111. Exemption for contributions to a medical savings account.
Contributions by an individual to a qualified medical savings account are exempt from execution, attachment, garnishment or any other process issued by any court, except for judgments against an individual or other dependents for medical expenses, to the extent the contributions are allowable as a deduction under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.
1-40-113. Waivers and releases void; exemption from creditors’ claims. (Crime Victims’ Compensation)
Any agreement by an individual to waive, release or commute his rights under this act is void. Compensation due under this act may not be assigned, pledged, encumbered, released or commuted. Compensation under this act is exempt from all claims of creditors and from levy, execution and attachment or other remedy for recovery or collection of a debt, except that compensation for an allowable expense is not exempt from a claim of a creditor to the extent that creditor provided products, services or accommodations, the costs of which are included in the compensation award.

7-16-308. Assignment of earnings; disbursements; exemption from process; incurring of debts. (Inmates on Work Release)

(b) Except as provided by W.S. 20-6-201 through 20-6-222, the earnings of inmates under this act are not subject to garnishment, attachment or execution either in the hands of the employer or any agent authorized to hold and transmit the earnings.
7-18-114. Record and disbursement of wages; exemption from process; confidentiality of amount. (Inmates in Adult Corrections)(d) The earnings of inmates under this act are not subject to garnishment, attachment or execution.

9-3-426. Benefits, allowances and contents of account exempt from taxation and not subject to execution or attachment; assignment limited; qualified domestic relations order; system assets. (Public Employees)

(a) The benefits and allowances and the cash and securities in the account created by this article:

(i) Are exempt from any state, county or municipal tax of this state;
(ii) Are not subject to execution or attachment by trustee process or otherwise, in law or equity, or under any other process whatsoever;
(iii) Shall not be used for any purpose other than a purpose specified in W.S. 9-3-407(c); and
(iv) Are not assignable except as specifically provided in this article.

9-3-620. Exemption of benefits from state and local taxes, execution and attachment; benefits paid under qualified domestic relations order. (Game and Fish Wardens; Highway Officers; Criminal Investigators)

(a) Benefits and allowances set forth under this article are exempt from any state, county or municipal tax and are not subject to execution or attachment by trustee process or otherwise, in law or equity, or under any other process, and are not assignable except as specially provided in this article.
(b) Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, benefits and allowances under this article may be paid in accordance with qualified domestic relations orders pursuant to W.S. 9-3-426.
12-4-604. Transfer or sale of license or permit; attachment, garnishment or execution.
No license or permit shall be transferred or sold except as provided by W.S. 12-4-601 through 12-4-603, used for any place not described in the license or permit at the time of issuance or subject to attachment, garnishment or execution.

15-5-209. Payments; when and how made; protections; nonassignability; qualified domestic relations order. (Firefighters’ Death Benefits)

(a) Payments made under this article shall be made to the beneficiaries on or before the fifth day of each month and shall be made by voucher approved by the board or its designee drawn against the firemen’s pension account and paid by the board out of the account. No payments made under this article are subject to judgment, attachment, execution, garnishment or other legal process and are not assignable nor shall the board recognize any assignment nor pay over any sum assigned.
(b) Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, payments under this article may be made in accordance with qualified domestic relations orders pursuant to W.S. 9-3-426.

19-9-401. National guard members granted certain exemptions.

(a) Members of the Wyoming national guard are exempt from:

(i) Labor on the public highways;
(ii) Service as jurors;
(iii) Garnishment or attachment of monies accruing from performance of military duty under orders of the governor.

25-13-107. Compensation of employed inmates; payment and disposition. (Inmates in Correctional Industries)

(d) The earnings of inmates under this act are not subject to garnishment, attachment or execution either in the hands of the employer, the department or any agent authorized to hold and transmit the earnings.

26-15-129. Exemption of proceeds; life insurance.

(a) If a policy of insurance is executed by any person on his own life or on another life, in favor of a person other than himself, or except in cases of transfer with intent to defraud creditors, if a policy of life insurance is assigned or in any way made payable to that person, the lawful beneficiary or assignee thereof, other than the insured or the person executing insurance or executors or administrators of the insured or the person executing the insurance, are entitled to its proceeds, including death benefits, cash surrender and loan values, premiums waived and dividends, whether used in reduction of premiums or otherwise, excepting only where the debtor, subsequent to issuance of the policy, has actually elected to receive the dividends in cash, against the creditors and representatives of the insured and of the person executing the policy, and are not liable to be applied by any legal or equitable process to pay any debt or liability of the insured individual or his beneficiary or of any other person having a right under the policy, whether or not:

(i) The right to change the beneficiary is reserved or permitted; and
(ii) The policy is made payable to the person whose life is insured if the beneficiary or assignee predeceases that person, and the proceeds are exempt from all liability for any debt of the beneficiary existing at the time the policy is made available for his use.

(b) However, subject to the statute of limitations, the amount of any premiums paid for insurance with intent to defraud creditors, with interest thereon, shall inure to their benefit from the policy proceeds; but the insurer issuing the policy is discharged of all liability thereon by payment of its proceeds in accordance with its terms, unless before payment the insurer receives written notice at its home office, by or in behalf of a creditor of:

(i) A claim to recover for transfer made or premiums paid with intent to defraud creditors;
(ii) The amount claimed along with facts as will assist the insurer to ascertain the particular policy.

(c) For the purposes of subsections (a) and (b) of this section, a policy is payable to a person other than the insured if and to the extent that a facility-of-payment clause or similar clause in the policy permits the insurer to discharge its obligation after the death of the individual insured by paying the death benefits to a person as permitted by the clause.

26-15-130. Exemption of proceeds; disability insurance.
Except as otherwise provided by the policy or contract, the proceeds of all contracts of disability insurance and of provisions specifying benefits because of the insured’s disability, which are supplemental to any life insurance or annuity contracts executed, are exempt from all liability for any debt of the insured and from any debt of the beneficiary existing at the time the proceeds are made available for his use.

26-15-131. Exemption of proceeds; group insurance.

(a) A policy of group life insurance or group disability insurance or the proceeds thereof, including death benefits, cash surrender and loan values, premiums waived and dividends, whether used in reduction of premiums or otherwise, excepting only where the debtor, subsequent to issuance of the policy, has actually elected to receive the dividends in cash, payable to the individual insured or to the named beneficiary are not liable to be applied by any legal or equitable process to pay any debt or liability of the insured individual or his beneficiary or of any other person having a right under the policy. The proceeds, when not made payable to a named beneficiary, or to a third person pursuant to a facility-of-payment clause, do not constitute a part of the insured individual’s estate for the payment of his debts.
(b) This section does not apply to group insurance issued pursuant to this code to a creditor covering his debtors, to the extent that the proceeds are applied to payment of the obligation for the purpose of which the insurance is issued.

26-15-132. Exemption of proceeds; annuity contracts; assignability of rights.

(a) The benefits, rights, privileges and options which under any annuity contract issued are due or prospectively due the annuitant, are not subject to execution nor is the annuitant compelled to exercise any such rights, powers or options. Creditors are not allowed to interfere with or terminate the contract, except:

(i) As to amounts paid for or as premium on the annuity with intent to defraud creditors, with interest thereon, and of which the creditor gives the insurer written notice at its home office prior to the making of the payment to the annuitant out of which the creditor seeks to recover, which notice shall specify:

(A) The amount claimed or facts to enable the ascertainment of the amount; and
(B) Facts to enable the insurer to ascertain the annuity contract, the annuitant and the payment sought to be avoided on the ground of fraud.

(ii) The total exemption of benefits presently due and payable to any annuitant periodically or at stated times under all annuity contracts under which he is an annuitant shall not at any time exceed three hundred fifty dollars ($350.00) per month for the length of time represented by the installments, and any periodic payments in excess of three hundred fifty dollars ($350.00) per month are subject to garnishee execution to the same extent as are wages and salaries;
(iii) If the total benefits presently due and payable to any annuitant under any annuity contracts at any time exceed three hundred fifty dollars ($350.00) per month, the court may order the annuitant to pay to a judgment creditor or apply on the judgment, in installments, that portion of the excess benefits as to the court appear just and proper, after regard for the reasonable requirements of the judgment debtor and his family, if dependent upon him, as well as any payments required to be made by the annuitant to other creditors under prior court order.

(b) If the contract provides, the benefits, rights, privileges or options accruing under that contract to a beneficiary or assignee are not transferable nor subject to commutation, and if the benefits are payable periodically or at stated times, the same exemptions and exceptions contained in this section for the annuitant, apply to the beneficiary or assignee.

6-15-133. Retention of proceeds of policy by company.

(a) Any life insurer may hold the proceeds of any life or endowment insurance or annuity contract it issues:

(i) Upon the terms and restrictions as to revocation by the insured and control by beneficiaries;
(ii) With the exemptions from legal process and the claims of creditors of beneficiaries, other than the insured; and
(iii) Upon any other terms and conditions, regardless of the time and manner of payment of proceeds, agreed to in writing by the insurer and the insured or beneficiary.

(b) The insurer is not required to segregate funds held under subsection (a) of this section but may hold them as a part of its general corporate assets.
(c) The provisions of this section do not impair or affect any rights of creditors under W.S. 26-15-129 or 26-15-132.

27-3-319. Waiver agreements void; exception; assignments void; exemption from levy. (Unemployment Compensation)

(a) Except as provided by W.S. 27-3-305, 27-3-320 and 27-3-321, any agreement to waive, release or commute benefit rights or any other rights under this act is void and any agreement by any employed individual to pay any portion of an employer’s contribution required by this act is void.
(b) Except as provided by W.S. 27-3-305, 27-3-320 and 27-3-321, the assignment, transfer, pledge or encumbrance of benefit rights under this act is void.
(c) Benefit rights are exempt from levy, execution, attachment or other debt collection remedy. Benefits received by an individual under this act and not combined with other funds of the recipient are exempt from debt collection remedies except those incurred for necessities furnished to the individual, his spouse or dependents during his unemployment. A waiver of exemptions provided by this subsection is void.
27-14-702. No garnishment, attachment or execution on unpaid award. (Workers’ Compensation)
Except as provided under W.S. 27-14-703, no money paid or payable under this act prior to issuance and delivery of the warrant therefor shall be assigned, charged or taken in execution or by garnishment. Any such assignment, attachment, garnishment or charge is void.

42-2-113. Assignment or transfer of assistance and services; exemption from legal process.

(a) Any assignment or transfer of public assistance and social services provided under this article is void.
(b) Except as authorized under W.S. 42-2-112(m), public assistance and social services provided by this article are exempt from levy, execution, attachment, garnishment or other legal process or debt collection remedy. A waiver of exemptions provided by this subsection is void.

Note: While this reference information is current as of October 2010, it may not reflect the most up-to-date exemption figures on official state of Wyoming bankruptcy court statutes.

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