A report released yesterday by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts showed that new filings (PDF) in U.S. bankruptcy courts rose by 8 percent from 2009 to 2010, but that number pales in comparison to the more than 30 percent increases seen across the country annually since 2006.
There were 1.59 million new bankruptcy filings in 2010, up from 1.47 million filings in 2009. About 71 percent of those proceedings were under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code, where assets are liquidated and nonexempt proceeds go to creditors.
The only circuit to see a drop in filings in 2010 was the 6th Circuit, which includes federal courts in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee. New filings were down overall by 2.5 percent, from 219,765 to 214,336. New filings went up by about 20 percent between 2008 and 2009.
The 9th Circuit courts saw the largest jump, from 339,005 new filings to 404,289, about a 19 percent rise. That jurisdiction covers the most districts, including courts in Arkansas, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. New filings went up by about 56 percent between 2008 and 2009.
On the local front, in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Columbia, new bankruptcy filings were up by about 11 percent, from 1,173 in 2009 to 1,306 in 2010. New filings went up by about 34 percent between 2008 and 2009.
The majority of bankruptcy petitions were filed by individuals with non-business debt, according to the Administrative Office release.
The full report can be found here.