An Internet clock runs constantly on bankruptcy attorney Mark Zuckerberg’s computer, counting down the days, hours, minutes and seconds until new federal bankruptcy laws take effect.
The impending changes have a flood of Hoosiers rushing to file bankruptcy — and Zuckerberg longing for his 18-hour days to subside.
The crush likely will end Oct. 17 when new bankruptcy rules kick in. The law will make it costlier and more time-consuming to file bankruptcy, and will make it harder for above-average earners to simply wipe their slates clean.
The law has been sharply criticized by bankruptcy attorneys and consumer advocates but praised by banks, credit-card companies and other lenders for bringing balance to a system that has favored debtors since 1978.
Personal bankruptcy filings in Indiana and nationwide spiked 11 percent from April through June, according to U.S. Bankruptcy Courts figures. In Indianapolis, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana has received more than 100 personal filings a day during those months.
And the pace is quickening. Since July 1, the court has received an average of 125 filings a day, and more than 250 each day last week. Daily filings a year ago numbered about 30.