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Puerto Rico bankruptcies drop 26% in November

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Old San Juan was less active last month. (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual)

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Old San Juan was less active last month. (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual)

Bankruptcy filings dropped by 23 percent in November, when a total of 706 cases were filed, in comparison to the same month last year, according to preliminary figures released by research firm Boletín de Puerto Rico Thursday.

The data shows that so far this year, Puerto Rico individuals and corporations seeking protection from creditors have filed 9,480 cases in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. The single-month drop matches the trend for the first 11 months, whose cumulative total represents a 1.1 percent year-over-year drop, the report shows.

When broken down by categories, the November results conclude that three of the four types of filings showed drops, with only one category remaining flat.

Chapter 7 filings, or those filed by individuals or corporations seeking total liquidation of assets, were down 23.9 percent in November, with 309 cases filed. So far this year, a total of 3,954 filings have been submitted in court, representing a 2.4 percent year-over-year drop.

Chapter 13 cases, or those that allow individuals to undergo a financial reorganization supervised by a federal bankruptcy court, were down 26.5 percent in November, when 383 cases were filed. During the first 11 months of the year, 5,267 people have sought the court’s protection, representing a 2.6 percent year-over-year drop.

Meanwhile, Chapter 11 filings — a type of legal protection available to businesses and individuals looking to reorganize their finances and start over — totaled 13 in November, down a whopping 40.9 percent when compared to the same month in 2015. So far this year, 234 cases have been filed, which represent a 3.7 percent decrease when compared to the same 11-month period of 2015.

Finally, Chapter 12 filings, or those reserved exclusively for farmers and agricultural operations, remained flat last month, when a single case was filed. Cumulatively, those types of cases are down 1.1 percent year-over-year.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 29 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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