Puerto Rico bankruptcies soar 20% in November

Written by  //  December 10, 2013  //  Economy  //  No comments

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U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Old San Juan  (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual)

U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Old San Juan (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual)

Bankruptcy filings skyrocketed in November, when a total of 823 cases were filed, representing a whopping 20 percent increase when compared to the same month last year, according to preliminary figures released by research firm Boletín de Puerto Rico.

The data shows that so far this year, people and corporations seeking protection from creditors have filed 9,987 cases in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. The cumulative total represents a 4.75 percent year-over-year increase, the report shows.

When broken down by categories, the November results conclude that three of the four types of filings showed increases, with only one category reflecting fewer filings.

Chapter 7 filings, or those filed by individuals or corporations seeking total liquidation of assets, were up 31 percent in November, with 321 cases filed. So far this year, a total of 3,552 filings have been submitted in court, representing a 7 percent cumulative year-over-year difference.

Chapter 13 cases, or those that allow individuals to undergo a financial reorganization supervised by a federal bankruptcy court, were up 16 percent in November, when 485 cases were filed. During the first 11 months of the year, 6,225 people have sought the court’s protection, representing a 7 percent year-over-year difference.

Meanwhile, Chapter 11 filings — a type of legal protection available to businesses and individuals looking to reorganize their finances and start over — totaled 14 in November, down 22 percent when compared to the same month in 2012. So far this year, 189 cases have been filed.

Finally, Chapter 12 filings, or those reserved exclusively for farmers and agricultural operations, were up 200 percent last month, when three cases were filed. However, cumulatively, those types of cases are down 30 percent.

The results for November appear to be significantly high, but that may be partly due to the fact that in November 2012, bankruptcy filings were down 8 percent, keeping up a downward trend that had prevailed throughout most of the year, as this media outlet reported.

A year ago, 683 cases were filed in court, which represented a 15 percent drop from the number of cases on filed for November 2011.

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