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As most people are aware, the past few years have been particularly difficult financially for people throughout Florida as well as the rest of the country. As a result, people who in the past would not have found themselves facing financial hardship have ended up turning to bankruptcyfor debt relief.

Now, in what most people would consider as a positive sign for the economy, reports indicate that the number of personal bankruptcies filed in 2011 has declined. It is the first time it has done so since 2006.

According to Lundquist Consulting Inc., in 2010, the number of bankruptcies filed was 1.53 million. This past year, the number dropped to 1.35 million. The change is a decline of 11.9 percent.

The managing director asset-backed securities for Fitch Ratings Inc. indicated there are several reasons for the change. The first is the fact has improved a bit. While the improvement is not a large one, is has had an impact. The second reason is the more conservative spending habits residents of the country have adopted in an effort to protect themselves financially. Another reason is people have done what they can to try to reduce their debt.

All are anxiously awaiting a concrete sign that the economy is changing directions. Unfortunately, it is unclear whether the trend in declining bankruptcies will continue. In any event, bankruptcy still may be a good option for someone facing debt that they cannot handle. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can help determine possible ways to proceed.

Source: Collections & Credit Risk, “Bankruptcy Rates Shows First Decline Since 2006,” Jan. 17, 2012