There was a startling increase of over 40% in the number of bankruptcy filings in Hawaii during January 2019. According to U.S. Bankruptcy Court records this increase marks the highest level of bankruptcy filings in the state in seven years. This increase marks a sudden end to the state’s seven year decrease in filings. 

Bankruptcy Filings Breakdown

There was a significant increase in filings on all three of the Hawaiian Islands. On the island of Oahu filings jumped from 81 to 107. Filings on the Big Island were 16, which is a pretty big jump from the five filed last year. And, on Kauai there were 11 filings this year, but only three last year.  

All Hawaii bankruptcy filings chart Feb 2019
Statistics Courtesy of

There was a significant increase in the number of Chapter 7 bankruptcies also. This January’s total was 103 while last year there were only 64 recorded during the same time period. 

Chapter 7 Hawaii bankruptcy filings Feb 2019
Chapter 13 Hawaii bankruptcy filings Feb 2019
Statistics Courtesy of

What Do the Trends Say? 

According to historical trends, there will be a continuing rise in bankruptcy filings over the next five or six years. Historical trends being monitored since 1990 show that bankruptcy filings tend to follow an eight-year cycle. The numbers prove that the state is right on track with the eight-year cycle and there will most likely be an increase in filings for at least the next few years.

Will filings continue to rise? No one knows for sure. February filings showed a flattening out across all types of bankruptcy to 2018 levels.