Contact: John Hartgen
CONSUMER BANKRUPTCY FILINGS UP NEARLY 37 PERCENT
THROUGH FIRST HALF OF 2009
July 2, 2009, Alexandria, Va.— U.S. consumer bankruptcy
filings totaled 675,351 nationwide during the first six months of 2009
(Jan. 1-June 30), a 36.5 percent increase over the 494,610 total
consumer filings during the same period a year ago, according to the
American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI), relying on data from the National
Bankruptcy Research Center (NBKRC). The overall June consumer filing
total of 116,365 was 40.6 percent more than the 82,770 consumer filings
recorded in June 2008. While the June total represented an increase over
the previous year, it was a 6.8 percent decrease from the May 2009 total
of 124,838 consumer filings. Chapter 13 filings constituted 27.7 percent
of all consumer cases in June, a slight increase from May.
“As unemployment, foreclosures rates and health care costs
continue to rise, more consumers are turning to bankruptcy as a last
financial resort,” said ABI Executive Director Samuel J.
Gerdano. “We expect that there will be more than 1.4
million new bankruptcy filings by year end.”
ABI is the largest multi-disciplinary, nonpartisan organization
dedicated to research and education on matters related to insolvency.
ABI was founded in 1982 to provide Congress and the public with unbiased
analysis of bankruptcy issues. The ABI membership includes more than
12,000 attorneys, accountants, bankers, judges, professors, lenders,
turnaround specialists and other bankruptcy professionals, providing a
forum for the exchange of ideas and information. For additional
information on ABI, visit www.abiworld.org. For additional
conference information, visit http://www.abiworld.org/conferences.html.
NBKRC is an online research center that offers subscribers access to
up-to-date research and statistics on bankruptcy filings. The database
contains complete information dating back to 1995. For more information
on NBKRC, please visit http://www.nbkrc.com.
*Definitions from Bankruptcy
Overview: Issues, Law and Policy, by the American
7 of the Bankruptcy Code is available to
both individual and business debtors. Its purpose is to achieve a fair
distribution to creditors of the debtor’s available non-exempt
property. Unsecured debts not reaffirmed are discharged, providing
a fresh financial start.
Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy
Code is available for both business and consumer debtors. Its purpose is
to rehabilitate a business as a going concern or reorganize an
individual’s finances through a court-approved reorganization
Chapter 12 of the Bankruptcy
Code is designed to give special debt relief to a family farmer with
regular income from farming.
Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code is available for an
individual with regular income whose debts do not exceed specific
amounts; it is typically used to budget some of the debtor’s
future earnings under a plan through which unsecured creditors are paid
in whole or in part.