Connecticut's Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings shot up 49 percent in the second quarter of 2009 from the same period a year ago, according to The Warren Group.
There were 2,329 filings under Chapter 7 of the U.S. bankruptcy code from April through June, up from 1,563 during the same months in 2008, said Boston-based Warren Group. The number of filings was also 38.2 percent higher than the first quarter, when 1,685 filers sought Chapter 7, in which a debtor's assets are liquidated to pay to creditors.
The number of filers seeking protection under Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the second quarter was higher than each of the previous five quarters. A total of 4,014 Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings were recorded in the first half of 2009, a 43.8 percent increase from 2,792 last year.
"The spike in bankruptcy filings shows just how hard it has been for consumers to keep up with their bills in this tough economy," said Timothy M. Warren Jr., CEO of The Warren Group, publisher of The Commercial Record.
A Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing is the most common option for individuals who are seeking relief from their debts and accounted for 87 percent of bankruptcy filings tracked by The Warren Group in Connecticut during the second quarter of 2009.
People filing under Chapter 7 bankruptcy can eliminate most debt after non-exempt assets are used to pay off creditors. In contrast, Chapter 13 requires debtors to arrange for a three- or five-year debt-repayment plan.
Filings under Chapter 13 of the U.S. bankruptcy code slid in the second quarter compared to a year ago but increased from the first quarter 2009. There were 309 Chapter 13 filings in the second quarter, a 37.1 percent drop from 491 during the second quarter in 2008.
But Chapter 13 filings climbed 8.4 percent from 285 the previous quarter. A total of 594 debtors filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy during the first six months of 2009, down 41.6 percent from 1,018 a year ago.