Updated: 2021-01-26 by
When bankruptcy law was first modernized 50 years ago, the proposal was to have a federal list of bankruptcy exemptions apply uniformly across all 50 states. Many states objected to this idea, because state collection law had traditionally ruled that issues of collections and "asset protection" were matters of state, not federal law. So a compromise was struck, that allows states to "opt out" of the federal bankruptcy exemptions.
Every state has a list of exemptions that protect specific types and amounts of property from collections on judgements within that state.
You may also be interested in:
The Federal Government adjusts Federal exemption amounts every three years. Does California adjust exemption amounts?
A quick summary of the main exemptions under California law.