Total U.S. bankruptcy filings increased 3% in July 2019 from July 2018, according to data from the American Bankruptcy Institute, provided by Epiq Systems.
Total filings registered 64,283 in July 2019, up from the July 2018 total of 62,241. The 61,025 consumer filings in July also represented a 3% increase from the previous year’s consumer total of 59,110. July 2019 business filings increased 4% to 3,258 from July 2018’s business total of 3,131. The 417 commercial Chapter 11 filings in July 2019 were a 1% increase over the 413 commercial chapter 11 filings last July.
“Amid increasing debt loads and growing global challenges, bankruptcy provides financial shelter for distressed consumers and businesses,” said ABI Executive Director Samuel J. Gerdano. “Congress recently passed legislation that will provide better access to the financial fresh start of bankruptcy for struggling small businesses, veterans and family farmers.”
The U.S. Senate on Aug. 1 passed the Small Business Reorganization Act of 2019 (H.R. 3311), Honoring American Veterans in Extreme Need Act of 2019 (H.R. 2938) and Family Farmer Relief Act of 2019 (H.R. 2336) by a voice vote. The three bills modernize the Bankruptcy Code to ensure that struggling veterans, Main Street businesses and family farmers have access to better tools for achieving a financial fresh start. ABI testified in support of the three bills, and the legislation will now proceed to President Trump for signature into law.
July’s total bankruptcy filings increased 5%in July from last month’s total of 61,079. Consumer filings also rose 5 percent in July from the 58,003 filings in June.
Commercial filings represented a 6% increase over last month’s total of 3,076. However, commercial Chapter 11 filings represented a 2% decrease from the June total of 425.
The average nationwide per capita bankruptcy-filing rate in July was 2.50 (total filings per 1,000 per population), a slight decrease from the filing rate of 2.51 during the first six months of 2019. Average total filings per day in July 2019 were 2,962, a 4 percent decrease from the 3,072 total daily filings in July 2018. States with the highest per capita filing rates (total filings per 1,000 population) in July 2019 were:
1. Alabama (5.61)
2. Tennessee (5.39)
3. Georgia (4.31)
4. Mississippi (4.25)
5. Nevada (3.79)