by Jay Fielding
TWO dozen bankruptcies were filed in Bundaberg during the last quarter.
The 24 bankruptcies represented almost half of the 49 insolvency cases in the area during the three months to June.
Insolvencies in Bundaberg were up 26.5% on the previous quarter and up 10% on the June quarter last year.
Seven of the insolvencies were business related, while the rest were personal or did not include a reason.
The Australian Financial Security Authority figures do not indicate whether the bankruptcies were business related or personal.
During the previous quarter, a total of 36 insolvencies were filed in Bundaberg, six of them business related.
In the June 2016 quarter, Bundy racked up 44 insolvencies, seven of which were business related.
In Burnett, there were 16 insolvencies including six bankruptcies in the June quarter.
None were listed as being business related.
That was three fewer insolvencies than the March quarter, a 16% drop, and down six on the June quarter last year - a reduction of 27%.
The AFSA uses the Bureau of Statistics Level 3 regions; Bundaberg includes the Rum City, Bargara, Moore Park and Childers and Burnett includes Gin Gin, the North Burnett and the South Burnett.
Shine Lawyers national insolvency solicitor Michael Lalji said it was important people sought advice when their debt was not manageable so all options the law provided could be properly considered.
"It's important to remember that company liquidation or bankruptcy is not necessarily the only option for companies or individuals facing financial pressure."
He said in many cases, there were alternative options that could provide better outcomes for companies and individuals and better returns to creditors.
Mr Lalji said regional communities heavily geared to a particular industry or project could experience increases in corporate insolvency and personal bankruptcy as a result of unexpected downturns.
"However, caution needs to be exercised when considering small samples as variations in the number of insolvencies can occur that do not necessarily mean there is a trend."
Insolvencies in Bundaberg:
June Quarter 2017 49
June Quarter 2016 44
June Quarter 2015 39
June Quarter 2014 40
Insolvencies in Burnett:
June Quarter 2017 16
June Quarter 2016 22
June Quarter 2015 14
June Quarter 2014 26