The Need to File for Bankruptcy Can Strike Anyone

Bad Financial Advice Leads Pro Hockey Player To File For Bankruptcy Relief

From the outside, people often think that those who file for bankruptcy must be financially irresponsible and that bankruptcy could never happen to them. However, both of these ideas frequently could not be further from the truth.

One example of how the need to file for bankruptcy can strike anyone is the story of professional hockey player Jack Johnson. In October, the Columbus Blue Jackets player filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after his parents, who acted as his financial advisors, got him millions of dollars in debt.

Jack Johnson
Image Source (CC BY 2.0) by gansky ff via flickr

Johnson needed to file for bankruptcy because, despite making more than $18 million during his nine years in the National Hockey League, all of his money is nearly gone. He also owes some of the $5 million he will make under his contract for the upcoming season to creditors.

Johnson’s financial problems apparently stem, in part, from a situation where his parents took out $15 million in risky, high interest loans in Johnson’s name and without his knowledge. When Johnson later defaulted on these loans, it led to mounting debts, default fees, and interest penalties. In his bankruptcy court filings, Johnson indicates that he has assets of “less than $50,000” and that he is swamped with “more than $10 million” in debts, according to reports.

While this is a tragic example of how someone was apparently taken advantage of financially, Johnson is taking actions to “find his way out of the financial mess” by hiring an experienced bankruptcy attorney who is helping to straighten out his finances and give him a fresh start.

Bankruptcy Help In Monroe, Dade, And Broward Counties, And Beyond

As the Jack Johnson story above shows, people who are in money troubles need the help of someone who is trustworthy and experienced in dealing with serious financial matters. At Hoffman, Larin & Agnetti, P.A., we have extensive knowledge and skill in dealing with loan modification issues, foreclosure defense, and helping our clients file for bankruptcy relief.

Our bankruptcy attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, North Miami Beach, Key West, and Islamorada understand that our clients typically come to us for help after they have run into financial problems after losing a job, going through a divorce, or suffering a serious illness. We also know that these types of problems are quite common. In fact, U.S. Bankruptcy Court data for 2014 indicates that during the past 12 months, there have been almost 30,500 bankruptcy petitions filed in the Southern District of Florida’s bankruptcy court. Of these filings, almost 18,000 individuals filed for Chapter 7 relief (where most types of debts can be cancelled and property needed for restarting your life can be protected from liquidation). Another approximately 12,000 individuals filed for Chapter 13 relief (which allows individuals with regular income to develop a plan to repay all or part of their debts).

If you are having financial problems and would like help, call our trusted Florida bankruptcy lawyers today at 305-653-5555 or use our online contact form for a free consultation to discuss your legal options.