The National Bankruptcy Review Commission will make its recommendations on possible bankruptcy reform October 20, and credit card issuers, which saw defaults reach unequaled heights in 1996, are urging they get stronger hands after a citizen files for Chapter 13.

The issuers certainly have cause for complaint; at year end, bank card delinquencies totaled 5.45 percent of total dollars outstanding, according to the American Banker's Association. This amounted to $26.42 billion in delinquent accounts, according to figures supplied by the Federal Reserve's G-19 release on revolving credit amounts, about one percent of which would wind up under Chapter 13 protection. These figures have been creeping upwards since mid-1994, when 2.9 percent of total dollars outstanding, or $9.68 billion, were delinquent.

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