According to the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, bankruptcy filings are at their lowest in roughly 10 years. In 2010, there were 1.53 million cases filed throughout the country. This was compared to just over 770,000 cases filed as of September 2018. However, there are several different reasons as to why there are fewer cases being filed, and not all of the reasons are necessarily positive.
For instance, individuals may choose not to file for bankruptcy because it is too expensive. Attorney fees for a Chapter 7 case can average about $1,500, and there are other court costs and miscellaneous fees that typically must be paid as well. Individuals who were able to work out deals with their mortgage lenders could have avoided the need to file for bankruptcy. Student loan debt may be especially difficult to have discharged in bankruptcy.
This is because it can be hard to show that they are an undue hardship on an individual. In the United States, borrowers owe their lenders about $1.5 trillion. Those who cannot afford to pay their student loans may not be able to qualify for credit cards or want to accrue other types of debts. Finally, bankruptcies may be falling because fewer people are uninsured because of the Affordable Care Act .
Filing for bankruptcy may be beneficial to an individual for many different reasons. One of the benefits of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the ability to have most unsecured debts discharged very quickly. There are eligibility and other requirements that an experienced attorney can describe.