Asking for financial help can be an extremely difficult thing for people. Sometimes it can be denial of the severity of financial hardship that prevents people or businesses from seeking legal help. Sometimes, it is a feeling of shame that wrongly tells people that they shouldn’t seek help through an option like bankruptcy.
While it is crucial for consumers and businesses to understand that legal options such as bankruptcy exist for good reason, current numbers show that fewer entities are in need of bankruptcy protection. The number of bankruptcy filings in the U.S, according to Reuters, could be nearing numbers as low as before 2008, when the financial crisis took hold of the country.
Epic Systems, Inq. reports the following bankruptcy numbers:
- Within the first half of this year, there have been 632,130 bankruptcy filings, a number that is down by 14 percent compared to the same time last year.
- Bankruptcy filings among businesses have decreased by 22 percent.
- Consumer bankruptcy filings have decreased by 13 percent.
Perhaps these numbers do signify that the economy is improving or that certain financial safeguards such as low interest rates are helping people avoid excessive debt. The possibility also exists that more families and businesses are getting accustomed to the current reality of the country and adopting habits to avoid getting trapped under debts that can only be remedied by legal measures.
What happens over the course of the remainder of the year will create a more telling picture of bankruptcy trends in the country. No matter what, there will always be life factors that significantly alter the financial well-being of consumers and businesses, factors that ethically justify turning to the help of a bankruptcy attorney in order to start over and find some peace. Businesses and consumers needed bankruptcy protection before 2008 and it will remain an important option for struggling parties in the future.
Source: Reuters, “U.S. bankruptcies on pace to fall to pre-2008 level,” July 5, 2012