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Forecast: More Bankruptcies In '03

WASHINGTON-The American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) is forecasting that 2003 could set a new record for bankruptcy filings. According to ABI, the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts reported during November of 2002 that non-business bankruptcies had increased 12% during the fourth quarter of 2002 over the same period one year earlier. For the year, ABI said that personal non-business bankruptcies had increased 8%. Bankruptcy filings topped 401,000 for the quarter and 1.5 million for the year. ABI President Sam Gerdano said that one reason for the increase is the availability of credit to less qualified borrowers.

Board OKs MBL Rule For Texas

ALEXANDRIA, Va.-The NCUA board has approved a rule on member business loans (MBLs) that will apply to Texas' state-chartered credit unions. The NCUA decision amends a 1999 Texas rule and gives state charters the ability to grant unsecured MBLs up to $100,000 to reduce equity interest requirements for construction and land development loans.

CCUL Adds ID Theft Links

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif.-The California league said it has added links from its public wesite to information from the Federal Trade Commission, U.S. Department of Justice, California Department of Consumer Affairs, and a number of consumer groups, including Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, on how to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft, and what people can do if they think their identities have been stolen. The info can be found at www.ccul.org/philosophy/identity_fraud.htm. The FTC reported that 30,738 Californians notified the agency that they were the victims of identity theft last year.

SACU Adds Tax Prep Services

SAN ANTONIO-San Antonio Federal Credit Union (SACU) is now offering members tax preparation services at four of its branches. The cost to prepare an individual return for SACU members is $99 and $129 for non-members and are being offered through the credit union's CUSO, SACU Financial Solutions, Ltd. "Many people procrastinate in filing a tax return because they are unsure of where to turn for tax services," said Christine Keyser-Fanick, EVP of SACU Financial Solutions, Ltd. "We can provide a one-stop opportunity for those needing an individual tax return prepared and who wish to have the cash from their return in their hands quickly."

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