Bankruptcy cases for the Western District of New York continue their three year decline. For the first three months of 2012, only 1,615 cases were filed in the court, which includes Rochester, Buffalo and the Southern Tier. This represents a 8.7% drop from the first three months of 2011. In the Rochester Division alone, cases were off 11% this year compared to January - March 2011. Cases filed by Monroe County residents were down 11.8%.
Only 2,478 cases were filed in 2011 in the Rochester Division of the Court, a 20.7% drop from 2010, and a 29% drop from 2010. In the early 2000's, before the changes made to the bankruptcy code in 2005, annual bankruptcy filings in Rochester topped 5,000 per year.
Details of the bankruptcy statistics for WDNY thru March 31, 2012 are found at this link.
Speculation as to the cause of the local bankruptcy drop ranges from tighter credit card standards following the Great Recession, to the higher cost of filing bankruptcy, to the fact that Western New York did not suffer the housing bubble experienced elsewhere in the country. However, with fewer bankruptcy filings, it is all the more important that cases that are filed are prepared carefully: with fewer cases to review, the bankruptcy system (the trustees, the United States Trustee, creditors and the Court) can review individual cases more carefully, looking for errors and abuse.
If you are considering bankruptcy, and wish to be sure that your case is carefully prepared, please contact me for a free phone analysis (see the contact page on my web site.)