This is a common question that we get asked quite frequently. And the answer is probably not, unless you have some kind of business relationship with them, or if one of them owes you money. Bankruptcy is a matter of public record, so anyone could get access to the information, however it is usually not published anywhere. The only exception to this if a large asset is involved (such as a business) .
There were over 6,172 bankruptcies filed in the first quarter of 2009 alone. That is up over 33% from the same time period in 2008. It is highly likely that several people that you know have filed bankruptcy before, and that practically everybody knows at least one person who has filed before. Think about it. You probably know someone who has filed. Do you think any less of them? Do you ever think about it at all? Bankruptcy is not something to be ashamed of. The vast majority of bankruptcies are filed by people who have gone through a major life-changing event that was beyond their control, such as a divorce, a medical crisis, or losing a job. Bankruptcy is simply an organized way for a civilized society to deal with one of its most common problems.
So, will your friends find out if you go bankrupt? They will if you tell them. There is a slim chance they could find out on their own but they would need to actively seek the information. Don’t let the fear of embarrassment keep you from getting out of financial trouble.