Personal Bankruptcy Filings: Consumers Filing for Bankruptcy on the Rise

Personal bankruptcy filings have grown substantially since this time last year and the last resort of bankruptcy is becoming the only option for some who are being hit by the economic recession.  Over one million personal bankruptcies were filed since the beginning of the year, which is the highest it has been since 2005.  With consumers losing jobs and stretching their credit to the max trying to stay afloat, there have been little alternatives to filing bankruptcy for many who were securely making $40,000 or more a year not so long ago.  Saving are being depleted while trying to ride out the recession, credit card payments and interest are mounting, and mortgage payments and interest are the source of woes for many who are seeing filing personal bankruptcy as the only option.

Bankruptcy laws changed in 2005 and made it more difficult for consumers to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy and caused consumers to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy which would asses the personal debts of an individual and set up a payment plan which were around five years in duration.  These new bankruptcy regulations were set in place to stop personal bankruptcy claims, which simply cleared the slate on anyone looking to get out of debt.  Chapter 13 caused those filing for personal bankruptcy to make some form of payment rather than just walking away, but it seems that the majority of the bankruptcy filings for this year have been Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

There is no clear forecast on the personal bankruptcy problem many are facing but it is predicted that the personal bankruptcy claims will be over 1.4 million before the year is out.  Couple this with the number of unemployed individuals who are exhausting their benefits from being laid off and those who are scraping by as best they can in the hopes that our country can soon return to work and prosperity it looks like bankruptcy may be the only out for many.  Personal bankruptcy is basically a credit prison sentence for 5 to 10 years, but with no jobs, benefits, or income, and plenty of mortgage and credit debt it looks like personal bankruptcy could be on the path of many Americans unless our “recovering” economy truly does bring about drastic change.

In the coming weeks millions of Americans will look to complete the tax filing process in hopes of getting a refund check very quickly.  Some of these individuals might seek WalMart Online Tax eFile Help for Free.  Remember that many Super WalMart locations throughout the country are offering tax help services but they often come with a fee.  Doing research on these services might be very helpful.

Some may also be seeking alternatives such as Staples Turbo Tax Premier Federal and State Edition 2011.  Staples as well as many other retailers are offering plenty of opportunities to purchase tax prep software.  It might be good to check out Best Buy, Target, Costco and Sams Club as well.