Personal Bankruptcies Up 9 Percent

Tuesday, January 04, 2011 - 11:16 AM

Even though a law passed five years ago was supposed to curb them, personal bankruptcies were up 9 percent in 2010. They were highest in South Florida were filings were up a staggering 40 percent. We're taking a deeper look at this for tomorrow's show and we're asking you: What is the biggest source of your debt (even if you haven't declared bankruptcy)? Here's what you told us by text (sign up by sending the word START to 69866 from your mobile phone):

I am one of those who filed bankruptcy in 2010. Every divorce lawyer I spoke w/ recommended it, but I still resisted filing until he stopped paying on jt debts.
—Providence, RI

Biggest source of my debt is supporting family members to prevent their bankruptcies.
—Ann Arbor, Mich.

I declared Bankruptcy in 2005 because of being out of wk for almost 10 mths (in a then good market). My biggest debt currently is my car and student loans, which are in deferment because I am currenly in school.
—Denver, Colo. 

While I'm in fairly decent shape financially, my fiance is nearing the $37000 mark on medical bills due to a bout with cancer. She may declare bankruptcy before we get married so her debt doesn't get put on me.
 —Justin Winbolt, Enid, Okla.

My biggest source of dept is college loans, followed a close second by my stupid, stupid city car.
—New London, Conn.

Source? Do teenagers count?
—Pontiac, Mich.

I'm not in debt, but only thanks to my parents. I honestly don't know how I could survive and pursue a career meaningful to me without strings attached financial support.
—Jersey City, NJ

STUDENT LOANS! I graduated from college in Dec of 2007 and have had a very difficult finding a job that pays enough to repay loans.
—Columbia, SC

I really feel that some of the questions that concern American debt is personal, reason being that our government has strategically placed corporations in power to control the financial intake of the American people, also advertising agencies that control the way we think, which means if any American becomes in debt it is by one's fault but also definitely by the controls of the power that be. I fault the U.S. gov. for our economic status and American peoples' financial mishap.
—Kamal, Alpharetta, Ga.

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Comments [3]

Alvena from Western KY

I've been lucky in that I'm working, and as the child of depression-era parents, I was raised money-wise and have been relatively cautious with my spending (thank you Mom & Dad!).
Unfortunately, I think many people invested in homes that they could not afford, partially due to their own ignorance about money, and partially due to inherently criminal but largely legal practices of the lenders.
My home is not fancy but it's quite livable and in relatively good repair. My bank/mortgage holder actually mailed me a marketing ploy urging me to borrow more money on it for home improvements—I wisely declined. People need to live within their means, and my means are modest, as is my spending. As a result, I have money in the bank, a decently-funded IRA for my retirement, and a home that's getting pretty close to being paid off.

Jan. 05 2011 08:51 AM
Katie from Chicago

Most of the debt that everyone has is purely personal in nature - credit cards, credit lines, etc. A simple solution to the debt problem would be NOT buying what you can't afford. I know plenty of people who do not have credit cards or have just one low credit account to build a credit history (which is a joke in itself). As for the student loans - there is always a choice of not getting a higher education and then earning a minimum wage till the end of your life. Get a perspective, people (or better control your spending).

Jan. 04 2011 04:57 PM
kathy from North Jersey

My mortgage is my largest monthly bill, but I luckily received a modification, thanks to our President, so it's smaller, but still difficult on a teacher's salary. I think food is very expensive, too. I became a vegeterian, for health benefits, but mostly because it is more affordable way of life!

Jan. 04 2011 01:55 PM

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