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Illinois Chapter 7: Equusearch wants Casey Anthony to pay

People in Illinois may remember the story of Casey Anthony. She was convicted of lying to law enforcement in connection with the death of her 2-year-old daughter Kaylee. Now, Casey Anthony has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection and is attempting to have her debts discharged. One of those debts is to Equusearch, the search firm that looked for her daughter.

The Texas based company filed a lawsuit against Anthony in state court to recover the approximately $100,000 it say she owes the company as the result of their search efforts back in 2008. Now that Anthony has filed bankruptcy, Equusearch has filed a petition in federal court asking the court not to allow Anthony to discharge her debt to the company. The company didn't find Anthony's daughter, but it contends that her false representations spurred the company's employees to continue searching and incur several thousands of dollars in expenses.

Equusearch may not be the only creditor of Anthony's that is objecting to her discharge. There are at least two other creditors that have indicated that they believe she should be ordered to pay. It remains to be seen whether the Bankruptcy Court judge agrees. Illinois residents that file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection may need to know that creditors have the right to file objections to the discharge of a debt owed them. Usually, creditors that file objections are seeking payment for a secured debt such as a mortgage or car loan.

Occasionally, there are other unsecured creditors such as Equusearch that believe its debt should be paid. In these cases, the Bankruptcy Court may deny discharge of that debt, but only after the creditor can prove fraud to the court. Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can provide a fresh start for people that are struggling with their debt, but the process can be complicated and sometimes lengthy. Anyone that has a creditor object to his or her discharge may benefit from assistance in overcoming this potential obstacle.

Source: Orlando Sentinel, "Search group objects to Casey Anthony's bankruptcy discharge," Jeff Weiner, May 6, 2013

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