According to data from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, bankruptcy in Wisconsin is down 11% from the previous year. This is promising news both for Wisconsin and the rest of the country, as it continues a slow trend of recovery from the economic recession and shows continued improvement.
Bankruptcy Attorney Says Improvement is Slow
The news is reason for optimism, but according to a local bankruptcy attorney, that optimism should be guarded. Since its peak in 2010, when the national unemployment rate hit nearly 10%, bankruptcies are down considerably, but they are still coming in steadily, and the economy is not about to turn around overnight.
According to a Wisconsin bankruptcy attorney, fewer and fewer independent business owners and tradespeople are filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which is certainly a good sign. However, there is also the sobering fact that some people may be too poor to even afford the cost of filing – which can range from $800 to $2,000, depending on a variety of factors, says the bankruptcy attorney.
Fully 75% of Wisconsin’s bankruptcy cases are Chapter 7 filings, which are liquidations of personal or company assets. However, more and more people are beginning to file for Chapter 13 repayment plans instead, according to the bankruptcy attorney. In general terms, this means that debtors are trying to keep their assets and move to a feasible repayment of their debts rather than liquidating assets and potentially losing their cars or even their homes.
Nationally, bankruptcy filings are down 14%, so Wisconsin has a bit of catching up to do, but the signs are nonetheless looking brighter each day as the economy works its way back to normalcy.