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Why Child Support Payments are Not Subject to the Automatic Stay

When you file for bankruptcy, the automatic stay goes into effect. This is a legal order that stops your creditors from continuing their efforts to collect the debt you owe them. It is your chance for a “breather,” a bit of relief from their collection attempts as you organize your bankruptcy case and begin the process of repaying and discharging your debt.

There are two notable exceptions to the automatic stay: child support and spousal support payments. When you file for bankruptcy, you must continue to make these payments.


How Do I Know if an Asset is Exempt from Liquidation in my Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case?

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is often called “liquidation bankruptcy” because it involves the liquidation of the filer's nonexempt assets to satisfy his or her debts. Certain classes of assets are exempt from liquidation, which means that the filer's bankruptcy attorney cannot sell them to recover liquid cash to satisfy the filer's debts. Other assets are nonexempt, which means that they can be liquidated in a Chapter 7 case.

In short, exempt assets are assets that filers need to continue living safe, productive lives. Certain assets, like the filer's primary home, are clearly exempt from liquidation. Others, like certain retirement accounts, are not as easy to discern. Below are a few ways to determine whether an asset is exempt from liquidation or not. If you are ever not sure about an asset's exemption status, ask your bankruptcy lawyer.


Aquion Energy Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Aquion Energy, the Pittsburgh-based energy storage company founded in 2007 that focused on the development of salt water batteries, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Although the company has halted production and marketing of its products and cut its workforce substantially, its leaders are optimistic that bankruptcy will help the company become profitable once again and allow it to continue to make innovations in its industry. The company's CEO stated that this is an “important phase” for the company as it works to secure a buyer for all its assets.

Insurmountable debt is an issue that can plague any company, regardless of its size or industry. From 2014 to 2016, Aquion Energy raised approximately $90 million from investors including Bill Gates, members of the Pritzker Family, and venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. It also received $5.2 million from the United States Department of Energy to open a manufacturing plant and create 400 jobs. It was also approved for more than $16 million in grant money from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.


Should Illinois Cities be Permitted to File for Bankruptcy?

Many Illinois cities are facing financial difficulties that can potentially be resolved through bankruptcy. According to the policy nonprofit Manhattan Institute, this is exactly what needs to happen. When a municipality is unable to pay back its debt, it may file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy, which allows certain contracts to be broken so the intervening trustee can reallocate money to help the municipality repay its debt. Illinois is not a stranger to this type of bankruptcy; since 1988, three cities in the state have filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy. This number could have been higher if the Illinois Financially Distressed City Law, an act that created a system that allows financially struggling cities to seek loans, bonds, and financial oversight from a state board in order to avoid bankruptcy, had not been passed in 1990.

How Can a City File for Bankruptcy?


The Limited's Parent Company Files for Voluntary Bankruptcy Relief

Limited Stores LLC, the parent company behind women's apparel retailer The Limited, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in January of 2017. It did this after receiving advice from corporate financial advisors in late 2016 and liquidating its remaining inventory at steeply discounted prices during the 2016 holiday season. It has closed all of its 250 stores and temporarily suspended online sales.

Like other brick-and-mortar retailers that have shuttered in recent years, The Limited pointed to declining mall traffic, the rise of ecommerce, and changing consumer tastes and values as the reasons behind its decline. In the years since its inception, The Limited had grown and diversified. At one time, it was part of a group of retailer brands that included Lane Bryant and Bath and Body Works. These companies are currently owned by other parent companies.

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