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Actress Kelly Rutherford files Chapter 7 bankruptcy

Many people in Tennessee likely worry that there is a stigma to filing for bankruptcy -- that it indicates a lack of responsibility. The truth, though, is that anyone can get in over their head when circumstances in their lives change or when faced with unexpected financial challenges.

Such is the case for actress Kelly Rutherford, who recently filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Rutherford has spent nearly $1.5 million in a battle with her ex-husband over the custody of their children. Because the judge awarded custody to her ex-husband, who is not allowed to travel to the U.S., Rutherford has had to make numerous expensive trips to Monaco, where the children reside with their father. Rutherford has also incurred an overwhelming amount of credit card debt.

Adding to her financial woes, Rutherford has also suffered a drop in her income since her show, “Gossip Girl,” finished filming. This loss of income has made it even more difficult for her to meet her mounting financial obligations, which include $358,960 owed in taxes for 2012. The bankruptcy petition calculates her total debts to be in excess of $2 million.

When facing hardship in personal circumstances, it is all too easy to fall into debt. What is often not so easy is trying to find a way to deal with the stress of the situation and the harassment from bill collectors.

If you are facing overwhelming debt, you may wish to consult an attorney who can assess your assets and obligations and explain your legal options. Whether you incurred these debts due to a loss of income, a lengthy illness or some other crisis, it may be that bankruptcy is the best solution to deal with your insurmountable debt.

Source: ABC News, "Kelly Rutherford Bankrupt Amid Custody Battle," Luchina Fisher, June 24, 2013

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