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Thousands wanted to go bankrupt in 2007

According to government figures that were recently released thousands of consumers wanted to declare themselves bankrupt during the course of 2007 in order to escape spiralling levels of debt. With rising interest rates and living costs many consumers faced financial problems last year, and this resulted in a record number of people looking to go bankrupt in order to get themselves out of a financial mess.

The figures show that over 53,000 people across England and Wales petitioned to declare themselves bankrupt over the course of the year, choosing not to wait until creditors advised them to take this course of action. Many were unable to keep up with their debts due to strained household finances. The number of people trying to declare themselves bankrupt last year was close to double the figure for 2004 and over 40% higher than the figure for 2005. However, it was under 1% higher than the figure for 2006.

Despite this higher overall figure for the whole year the final quarter of last year actually saw the level of bankruptcy petitions from borrowers fall by 10% compared to the final quarter of 2006 and to the lowest level since 2005. The number of creditors petitioning for borrowers to go bankrupt during the final quarter of last year also fell to the lowest level since 2004.

The level of the increase varied from region to region last year, with some areas seeing a rise in the number of borrowers filing for bankruptcy and some areas seeing a fall in these figures compared to 2006. Wales and the Northwest saw significant jumps in the figures compared to 2006, but there was a fall of 9% from borrowers in the Southwest compared to 2006.

Tom Smith
4th March 2008

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