Deseret News April 16, 2010 – SALT LAKE CITY
Nearly 18,000 residents in Utah filed for personal bankruptcy in 2010, bringing the state up to No. 9 in the national rankings among states with the highest number of protective filings per capita.
The number of filings in 2010 surpassed figures from 2009 [14,481], and many experts fear this year will continue a pattern of escalations given the high numbers already observed in the first few months of 2011. [There were 9,256 bankruptcies filed in Utah in 2008, and 6,284 in 2007.]
“It’s medical problems, and it’s job loss,” Ogden, Utah-based bankruptcy attorney Roy Cole told The Standard-Examiner. “They’re not buying fancy cars that they don’t get to keep. They’re losing everything.”
Fellow Ogden attorney Kent Winward says the recent bankruptcies are due to ineffective policies from Washington. In addition, he points out that consumers who filed in 2003 are now eligible to file once again for protection, which may be contributing to the filings.
Currently, there are 6.5 bankruptcies per 1,000 residents in Utah. However, Nevada, Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia have seen higher rates of personal bankruptcy, as many residents in these states turn to Chapter 7 and 13 filings to avoid creditors.