Twenty-six year old Casey Anthony has filed for bankruptcy protection in Florida, saying that she owes nearly $800,000 and has only $1,084 in the bank. Anthony, who was acquitted of killing her 2-year-old daughter Caylee in 2011, filed for protection under Chapter 7 bankruptcy in a federal court in Tampa on Friday. The debts listed on the bankruptcy filing included $500,000 for attorney fees and costs for her criminal defense attorney, Jose Baez, and $145,660 for the Orange County Sheriff's office. The Sheriff's office costs are related to investigative fees related to Anthony's criminal case, and she also owes $68,540 to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for taxes, interest and penalties and $61,505 for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for court costs.
Additionally, Anthony is a defendant in three civil lawsuits. One of these lawsuits, brought by Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez, accuses Anthony of defamation for the disappearance and death of Anthony's daughter. Anthony is currently listed as unemployed with no recent income, and her attorney did not respond to inquiries from the Associated Press about this matter. The 60-page court filing that Anthony submitted listed approximately 80 creditors, and the majority of the expenses listed on the Chapter 7 bankruptcy claim were for legal, medical, forensics consulting, and psychiatric services. There is, however, one claim for scuba diving services.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection is for the purpose of helping individuals discharge most of their existing debts, but there are some limitations as to what debts can be discharged. In these cases, a trustee usually has the right to take possession of and sell non-exempt property in order to pay the creditors with the sale proceeds. In a Chapter 7 case like Casey Anthony's, however, there is not much non-exempt property or assets that can be taken. If Anthony has any debt from taxes or student loans, these will not be discharged through the Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Anthony filed her Chapter 7 claim on the same day that the Florida appellate court set aside two of her four convictions that was faced. Anthony was still convicted of four counts of lying to detectives even though she was acquitted of killing Caylee, and her attorneys were recently successful in appealing two of those convictions. Anthony faces time for the other two misdemeanors and a year of probation after her release from jail. Many Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases are done in four months, but this unique situation may take longer depending on the various factors involved. To learn more about bankruptcy and how it applies to your specific situation, call a San Diego bankruptcy lawyer at San Diego Legal Pros today.