Total Bankruptcy Filings Down 14 Percent in Calendar Year 2012, Commercial Filings Down 22 Percent

January 4, 2013

Alexandria, Va.— Total bankruptcy filings totaled 1,185,328 nationwide for calendar year 2012 (Jan. 1-Dec. 31), a 14 percent decrease from the 1,379,658 total filings during the same period a year ago, according to data provided by Epiq Systems, Inc. The 1,127,540 total noncommercial filings during calendar year 2012 represented a 14 percent drop from the noncommercial filing total of 1,305,243 during calendar year 2011. Total commercial filings during calendar year 2012 (Jan. 1-Dec. 31) were 57,788, a 22 percent drop from the 74,415 filings during the same period in 2011. Chapter 11 filings also fell in 2012, as the 7,760 filings represented a 10 percent decrease from the 8,658 chapter 11 filings in 2011.

“The 2012 filings represent the lowest total since the financial crisis in 2008,” said ABI Executive Director Samuel J. Gerdano. “With low interest rates, reduced consumer spending and continued deleveraging by households, bankruptcy filings will likely continue their decline in 2013.”

The 75,556 total bankruptcy filings for the month of December represented a 22 percent decrease compared to the 96,527 filings in December 2011. The 71,817 total noncommercial filings for December represented a 21 percent drop from the December 2011 noncommercial filing total of 90,958. Total commercial filings for December 2012 were 3,739, representing a 33 percent decrease from the 5,569 filings during the same period in 2011. Chapter 11 filings registered a 25 percent drop as the 742 chapter 11 filings in December 2011 fell to 559 in December 2012. Average total filings per day in December 2012 were 2,437, a 22 percent decrease from the 3,114 total daily filings in December 2011.

The average nationwide per capita bankruptcy filing rate for calendar year 2012 (Jan. 1-December 31) decreased to 3.83 (total filings per 1,000 per population) from the 4.46 rate during calendar year 2011. States with the highest per capita filing rate (total filings per 1,000 population) through 2012 were:

1. Tennessee (6.88)
2. Nevada (6.43)
3. Georgia (6.43)
4. Alabama (5.84)
5. Utah (5.76)

ABI has partnered with Epiq Systems, Inc. in order to provide the most current bankruptcy filing data for analysts, researchers and members of the news media. Epiq Systems is a leading provider of managed technology for the global legal profession.

For further information about the statistics or additional requests, please contact ABI Public Affairs Manager John Hartgen at 703-894-5935 or jhartgen@abiworld.org.

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ABI is the largest multi-disciplinary, nonpartisan organization dedicated to research and education on matters related to insolvency. ABI was founded in 1982 to provide Congress and the public with unbiased analysis of bankruptcy issues. The ABI membership includes more than 13,000 attorneys, accountants, bankers, judges, professors, lenders, turnaround specialists and other bankruptcy professionals, providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and information. For additional information on ABI, visit www.abiworld.org. For additional conference information, visit http://www.abiworld.org/conferences.html.

Epiq Systems is a leading provider of managed technology for the global legal profession. Epiq Systems offers innovative technology solutions for electronic discovery, document review, legal notification, claims administration and controlled disbursement of funds. Epiq System’s clients include leading law firms, corporate legal departments, bankruptcy trustees, government agencies, mortgage processors, financial institutions, and other professional advisors who require innovative technology, responsive service and deep subject-matter expertise. For more information on Epiq Systems, Inc., please visit http://www.epiqsystems.com.