Prediction: 2011 bankruptcy filings will go down. What does that mean for Las Vegas?

If you’re a Las Vegas resident facing debt problems and contemplating a bankruptcy filing, the following information will not necessarily be specifically helpful; but it is interesting.

Bankruptcy filings for 2011 are projected to be 5% to 10% lower than they were in 2010.  A blog post by Professor Bob Lawless on CreditSlips.org (“Projected Filings for 2011“) notes that the actual projected number is 1,457,787.3 and wonders what an “0.3” filing might look like.  (Odds are it’s not pretty.)

If you’re planning on filing for bankruptcy, then of course these numbers mean nothing to you.  And in the grand scheme of things, the overall numbers are still well higher than they were a few years ago.  So it’s not time to throw a big party just yet.  (Plus, such a large expense just prior to a bankruptcy filing might be viewed with suspicion by the trustee.)

But as an indicator of our collective economic prospects for the future, the numbers are potentially encouraging and it’s good to understand what the underlying causes for such a decrease might be.

According to Lawless, the first is a forecast (by some) decrease in unemployment.  Unemployment numbers are frequently linked to bankruptcy filing numbers.  If unemployment doesn’t actually decrease, though, then that does not bode so well for a reduction in bankruptcy filings.

Second, Lawless suggests that people just haven’t had as much debt over the last 3 years, primarily because it’s been harder to borrow money.

And third, the consumer credit markets seem to be loosening up a bit.  So people with cash flow problems have more access to loans that can help them avoid a bankruptcy filing.

So what does this mean for Las Vegas?  Hopefully that the economy will start moving in a better direction.

But in the mean time, it means you still need an experienced Las Vegas bankruptcy attorney to help you if you’re facing debt problems.  For a free initial consultation, please contact an experienced Haines & Krieger bankruptcy lawyer by calling 702-880-5554.

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