In many instances a car is much more than a luxury -- it is a necessity. Little to no access to public transportation may mean that, without a vehicle, an individual has no way to get to work or to go grocery shopping for his or her family. For this reason, it is understandable that people in Washington pursuing Chapter 7 bankruptcy for personal debt often need to retain ownership of their vehicles.
Bankruptcies are reportedly down 12 percent just from 2012 to 2013. This is likely in part due to lower unemployment. However, restrictive lending practices is also claimed to have played a role as well.