More Oklahomans are filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy and Chapter 13 bankruptcy again. Total statewide Oklahomabankruptcy filings are up a total of 11.5 percent so far for 2007 compared to 2006. In fact, many Oklahoman bankruptcy court officials and bankruptcy attorneys believe that bankruptcy filings will eventually return to the pre-2005 bankruptcy law change numbers. (In October, 2005, Congress passed the Bankruptcy Abuse and Consumer Protection Act making Chapter 7 bankruptcy income-dependent and more difficult to file for individuals and married couples).
These Oklahoman bankruptcy attorneys and officials believe Chapter 7 & Chapter 13 bankruptcy filings will continue to rise for several reasons. First, the economy continues to remain sluggish, with no real end of the downturn in sight.Secondly, many people are able to obtain much more credit than they can repay, often at outrageous interest rates.Lastly, due to the sub-prime mortgage industry fallout, foreclosures are at a record high. While people have the ability to save their homes from foreclosure by filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy, many individuals and married couple have come to the realize that they can not afford their monthly mortgage payments on a going-forward basis and have decided to turn in or “surrender” their property by filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy.