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A better economy may be leading to fewer bankruptcy filings

Many of our Escondido readers likely see the regular reports that the American economy is doing well in a years-long effort at recovery. Over the last six to seven years, many Americans felt the crunch of a poor job market combined with a flat-lining real estate market. Taken altogether, Americans lost billions in wealth during the economic downturn. The result? Many people, including some individuals and families in Escondido, turned to a personal bankruptcy filing to address their financial problems.

But, it seems that the recovering economy is driving down the number of bankruptcy filings throughout the country. In fact, the early estimates for the number of bankruptcy filings in 2015 show that the number of filings was at its lowest level since 2006. The total number of bankruptcy filings is a combination of both personal and commercial bankruptcy filings.

The combined overall number of bankruptcy filings may be down, but that is not to say that every type of bankruptcy saw a decrease. The economic recovery may be working out better for individuals rather than companies, as the early estimates indicate that Chapter 11 bankruptcy filings actually increased from 2014 to 2015.

A strong and growing economy will almost always help everyone, from billionaires to Escondido residents who are working for minimum wage. However, there are still those who are on the outside looking in due to significant and overwhelming debt obligations. For these individuals, filing for bankruptcy can still be the right move in a bad situation. It may be frightening to consider bankruptcy, but after speaking with a legal professional an individual may discover that it can actually lift a weight off their shoulders and give them confidence for a new and brighter future.

Source: The Association of Credit and Collection Professionals, "Bankruptcy Filings Declined 10 Percent in 2015," Jan. 8, 2016

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