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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Statistics

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Just after the bankruptcy laws changed in 2005, bankruptcy filings slowed down dramatically. Of course, that was at least in part due to the huge number of people who filed just before the law changed, out of fear that they would no longer be eligible after the change.

Now, bankruptcy filings are mounting again.  With the economy faltering, mortgage foreclosures sweeping the country, and tens of millions of Americans uninsured, nearly 1.5 million people in the United States filed for bankruptcy protection in 2009.

Could personal bankruptcy offer you the relief you need? You've already taken the first step towards addressing this question by visiting Clear Bankruptcy.

Gathering information about your options is the first step, and a local bankruptcy lawyer can help you determine whether filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy might be the answer for you.

Credit Card Debt and Bankruptcy Statistics

According to a Center for Responsible Lending study, low and middle-income families have an average credit card debt of $8,650.

  • Recent Federal Reserve statistics revealed that American consumer debt rose to $2.51 trillion overall in November 2007. Consumer debt was expected to raise $8 billion that month; however, it actually rose by $15.4 billion. In comparison, consumer debt rose by $2 billion in October 2007.
  • As reported by the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education, authors Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Warren Tyagi note in their book The Two Income Trap that 90% of bankruptcy filings are the result of job loss, a serious medical problem or divorce.
  • According to the American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) relying on data from the National Bankruptcy Research Center (NBKRC), U.S. consumer bankruptcy filings increased by nearly 40% nationwide in 2007 as compared to 2006.
  • Specifically, the ABI detailed that there were 801,840 total consumer bankruptcy filings in the United States for the 2007 calendar year. In comparison, there were 573,203 total bankruptcy filings during the 2006 calendar year.
  • University of Illinois law professor Bob Lawless predicted on the Credit Slips blog that, counting personal and business bankruptcy chapters, there would be 1.19 million bankruptcy filings in 2008. Lawless predicted with a 95% confidence interval that there would be between .96 million and 1.43 million bankruptcy filings in 2008.
  • In total, there were just under 1.5 million bankruptcy filings in 2009, a 37% increase over 2008, and the most since 2005.

While these statistics may be shocking, they can also provide relief to those contemplating . Bankruptcy was created as an option for those facing impossible debt, and millions of Americans have taken advantage of the opportunity.

Discuss Chapter 7 Bankruptcy with a Bankruptcy Attorney

If you are considering bankruptcy as an option to end the cycle of debt, a local bankruptcy attorney can explain the process to you.

You can connect with an attorney today. Simply fill out our free bankruptcy evaluation form or call 877-833-2410 to speak with a bankruptcy lawyer near you.

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