How can I protect the equity in my home from creditors?

Massachusetts offers an automatic statutory “homestead” exemption of $125,000 from the claims of creditors. By filing a “Declaration of Homestead” with the Registry of Deeds, this protection can be increased to $500,000 per family. The elderly and disabled are entitled to even more protection. If two owners qualify for elderly or disabled homestead protection, the aggregate protection on the home can be increased to $1,000,000. Note that statutory homestead protection does not protect a home from claims by MassHealth for reimbursement of nursing home costs.