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Educated and well-paid increasingly file for bankruptcy

Many people like to think that if you take certain steps in life — go to college, get a degree, find a job and get married — that you are also securing financial success. And while that may be true for some people, it turns out that those with good-paying jobs, who are college graduates and married, also fit the description of a growing demographic that are filing for personal bankruptcies.

Recently the Institute for Financial Literacy released a study that looked at 50,000 individuals from 2006 to 2010 that had filed for a consumer bankruptcy. From there it was discovered that in 2010, almost 14 percent of those who filed for bankruptcy had earned a bachelor’s degree. In 2006, those with four-year degrees only made up 11.2 percent of those who filed.

Additionally, it was discovered that there has also been an increase in the number of people who filed for bankruptcy that had a good-paying job. In 2006, just 5.5 percent of all filers were those making more than $60,000 a year. In 2010 that percentage jumped to 9.2 percent.

And lastly, in 2006, of those who filed, 57.2 percent were married. In 2010 this demographic also increased to more than 60 percent, which is a higher percentage than the 50.3 percent of Americans that are actually married.

In general, the fact that more educated, well-paid and married individuals are filing for bankruptcy shows just hard how the recession and economy hit people across all demographics.

Fortunately bankruptcy no longer has the same stigma attached to it. Because of this, if you are struggling to pay your bills or are in fear of losing your home, it is best at least to look into what millions of Americans have already done, and learn more about the bankruptcy process.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, “Marriage, College, Job Won’t Ward Off Bankruptcy,” Eric Morath, Sept. 13, 2011

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