New Mexico Boasts Bankruptcy Rates Below National Average

In 2013, New Mexico’s bankruptcy rate fell below the national average, a new report from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Albuquerque reveals.

Last year’s bankruptcy statistics in the state show a continuation in a downward trend that began in 2010, according to an April 21 article from Albuquerque television news station KOAT 7.

The national average for bankruptcies in the United States is 3.3 bankruptcy filings per capita, KOAT reports. In 2013, New Mexico saw an average of two bankruptcy filings per capita. Valencia County, which is part of the Albuquerque Metropolitan Area, had the highest bankruptcy rate in the state with 2.8 bankruptcy filings per capita, the Washington Times reported.

Urban areas tend to see a higher number of bankruptcy filings than rural areas, according to Bankruptcy Court Clerk Norman H. Meyer, Jr. In bigger cities, employees experience more fluid boom and bust cycles, and consumer credit is also easily accessible, Meyer said.

In states like New Mexico, where major population centers are few and the land is primarily rural, this trend rings true. New Mexico is the 36th most-populous state, according to the 2010 United States Census.

Other factors that affect bankruptcy rates include income level, education level and home value, according to the Washington Times. Experts also cite high unemployment rates and long work commutes as potential catalysts for bankruptcy.

“People in urban areas have easier access to legal help, which people in rural areas may not have,” explains Charles Huber, Attorney at The Law Office of Charles H. Huber.”

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