The bankruptcy “head of household” exemption in Missouri applies to your children, and not someone else’s children. The children have to be related to the head of the family (either a man or a woman) either biologically or by adoption. That was the gist of a ruling by the Eighth Circuit B.A.P. in a recent Missouri case. The case was In Re Mark Turpen (B.A.P. 12-6039), from the Western District of Missouri.
Turpen was single and lived with his two minor children, an unrelated woman, and the woman’s three minor children. He filed a voluntary Chapter 7 petition in 2011. He then filed amended schedules B and C on February 20, 2012. The amended schedule B listed a 2011 tax refund of $8,491.00. The amended schedule C listed claimed exemptions in that refund totaling $3,600.00: $600.00 under § 513.430.1(3) and $3,000.00 under § 513.440, $1,250.00 for Turpen as head of the family, and $350.00 each for his two minor children and the woman’s three minor children.