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WASHINGTON-Several records were set with recently released data from the Administrative Office of the Courts regarding bankruptcy filings in the federal courts for the 12-months ending June 30, 2003. The 1,650,279 bankruptcy filings exceeded those filed in the same period the previous year (1,505,306) by 9.6%, according to the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. Filings for last quarter (440,257) also set a record for quarterly filings, up 9.9% from the previous year. The previous quarter saw 412,968, while filings in the first quarter of the Judiciary’s 2003 fiscal year (Oct. 1, 2002 -Dec. 31, 2002) totaled 395,129. Personal bankruptcies alone accounted for 1,613,097 of those, also an all-time high. That figure was 10% higher than the 12-month period ending June 30, 2002. At the same time, business filings fell 5.2%, from 39,201 for the 12-month period ending June 30, 2002 to 37,182 for the 12-month period ending June 30, 2003. Since 1999, business bankruptcy filings have dropped 6.9%. The largest group of filings, 1,165,993, was for Chapter 7, where the filer’s slate is wiped clean. Chapter 13 filings, where payment plans are worked out, were the second largest group with 472,811. Farm bankruptcies jumped to 775 for the 12-month period ending June 30, 2003, a 111.2% increase from the previous year’s 367. Chapter 11 filings, for business reorganizations, were down 7% in the same period.

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