An Anatomy of U.S. Personal Bankruptcy under Chapter 13
We build a structural model that captures salient features of personal bankruptcy under Chapter 13. We estimate our model using a novel data set that we construct from bankruptcies filed in Delaware between 2001 and 2002. Our estimation results highlight the importance of a debtor's choice of repayment plan length on other Chapter 13 outcomes. We use the estimated model to conduct policy experiments to evaluate the impact of more stringent laws that impose restrictions on the length of repayment plans. We find that these provisions would not materially affect creditor recovery rates and would not necessarily make discharge more likely.