The Urban Institute study says researchers looked at the credit files of Americans. They found that 35 percent of the country has debt in collections. That means the payments are past due, which typically happens if a bill hasn't been paid for nearly 6 months.
Andy Stadler, CEO of Stadler & Co., says he's seen more than two times the amount of people he normally sees at this time of year.
"I have to attribute it back to the fact that because of the rough economy we've went through starting to recover a little bit. Due to the rough economy folks really had to do things that maybe they didn't want to do or ordinarily would not have done," Stadler said.
Indiana and Illinois rank on the lower end of the debt scale. The most debt is located in the southern states.