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Fewer bankruptcy filings in Wisconsin last year

MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - Fewer Wisconsinites are filing for bankruptcy as the economy improves.

Almost 23,000 state residents sought protections in federal bankruptcy court last year. That's down by almost 10 percent from 2012, and 25 percent lower than in 2010 when the Great Recession was just starting to loosen its grip.  

Three-fourths of last year's Wisconsin bankruptcy filings were under Chapter Seven, the kind that wipes out credit card, medical, and utility debts.  

Milwaukee bankruptcy attorney James Miller says most of the blue collar workers who've lost their jobs or are underemployed have already filed for bankruptcy. Also, Miller says many people have reduced their credit card debt.  

However, more folks are leaning on high interest payday loans, as it's become harder for them to get new credit cards.  

Still, Milwaukee bankruptcy lawyer Robert Waud says business appears to be getting back to what it was before the recession.  

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says bankruptcies due to job losses are getting more historically proportionate to the other major reasons for personal bankruptcies -- major medical expenses and divorce.

Madison attorney Claire Ann Resop says lenders appear to be more willing to work with troubled borrowers than they did during the recession.  

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)