As part of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 (BAPCPA), an annual statistics report is required to be submitted to Congress by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts. The report is also accessible to the public.

BAPCPA Report – 2017

The summary of findings for the calendar year 2017 are as follows:

∙ 740,000 bankruptcy petitions were filed by individuals
∙ Approximately 61% of the petitions were filed under Chapter 7
∙ About 38% filed under Chapter 13
∙ One-tenth of one percent filed by individuals filed under Chapter 11
∙ Approximately 817,000 consumer cases were closed
∙ 61% of the closed consumer cases were filed under Chapter 7
∙ About 39% of closed cases were filed under Chapter 13
∙ Less than 1% of cases closed were filed under Chapter 11

Consumer Debt

In 2017 the consumers filing for Chapter 7, 11 or 13 bankruptcy protection reported $80 billion in assets and $105 billion in liabilities. The median average income by debtors was $2,741, with median expenses at $2,645.

Creditor Misconduct

The report also lists “the number of cases in which creditors were fined for misconduct and any amount of punitive damages awarded by the court for creditor misconduct.” Of the 816,892 cases filed in 2017, 142 had creditor misconduct, 12 had punitive damages and were awarded fees of $27,000.

Some of the misconduct findings were:

∙ An involuntary petition filed in bad faith
∙ Willful violation of the automatic stay
∙ Collusive bidding
∙ Creditor request for a determination of
dischargeability of consumer debt that was not
substantially justified
∙ Violation of the injunction against attempting to collect a discharged debt

Many of the court reprimands were not recorded on a court’s docket as a sanction so they will not show up in this report.

U.S. Courts

To see more of the report visit the site at U.S. Courts.

If you would like more information about bankruptcy and how it can help you get debt relief, contact a Fairfield bankruptcy attorney today.