U.S. Bankruptcy Court for Utah Clerk David Sime reported that Utahns filed 16,263 bankruptcies last year, a 12 percent decline from 2011, and first drop since shortly after Congress revamped the nation’s bankruptcy law in late 2005 to make it tougher for individuals to get relief from their debts.
This decline is indicative of Utah’s economy, which is stronger than the rest of the nation.
However- this doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone is doing better than they were a year ago.
Ginette Bott with the Utah Food Bank stated that “things are a little different from our perspective. We distributed more food in 2012 than we did in the previous year.”
Although she knows that more Utahns have gone back to work, she thinks that many have found jobs that pay far less than their previous employment.
“We see a lot of people whose standard of living has gone down drastically, and many who are only one step away from [financial] trouble. All it might take is a transmission going out on their car or maybe a kid breaks a leg and they don’t have insurance.”
Despite the decline in bankruptcy filings, Utah’s numbers remain comparatively high nationally, with the state claiming the fifth-highest filings per capita during the year — 5.76 filings for every 1,000 residents, according to the American Bankruptcy Institute. Nationally, there were an average 3.86 bankruptcy filings for every 1,000 people.
Bankruptcy is typically a last ditch resort when you are facing daunting financial circumstances. That said, waiting for your paychecks to be garnished or your property to be seized is never the right time to file bankruptcy. Filing for bankruptcy can actually help you protect your assets from your creditors and should be done before garnishments are in place. Call today for a free consultation and let us help you obtain financial independence.