• A Scottie Pippen Did File For Bankruptcy-Just Not The One Who Played For The Bulls

    Scottie Pippen is regarded as one the of the greatest defenders in the history of the National Basketball Association, but now the six-time NBA Champion is seeking to defend himself from reports that he filed bankruptcy. Pippen filed a lawsuit in Illinois against multiple media outlets seeking $1 million in damages from each of the 10 defendants named. The former Chicago Bull claims he has not been worth less than $40 million in the past 10 years.

    “It is a most foul libel indeed to be falsely accused of being bankrupt,” the lawsuit states. “Scottie never filed bankruptcy and indeed has a substantial net worth.”

    The Hall of Famer’s nickname of “No Tippin’ Pippen” for his reputation of being stingy with those in the service industry would lead one to believe that he was far more conservative with his money. While some bad investments certainly hurt him financially, the Miami New Times reported on December 14, 2011, that the “only Scottie Pippen in the United States who’s filed for bankruptcy is one Scottie Lee Pippen of Overland Park, Kansas, who filed for bankruptcy in 2005.” The Times said that a CNBC slideshow entitled “15 Athletes Gone Bankrupt” led the way for multiple outlets to run similar lists that included the former Bulls player.

    In other words, this blog post is not part of the recent series of “Famous Bankruptcies” on this blog. We will have to see if the more famous Pippen is able to clear his good name, but could you be confused with a famous person? Have you or somebody you know filed Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy and has the same name of a celebrity?

    Benjamin Brand Services – Chicago bankruptcy lawyer

  • Closet? R. Kelly’s Whole Estate Trapped in Negative Equity

    When recording artist R. Kelly was hit with a $2.9 million foreclosure lawsuit on his mansion 30 miles outside of Chicago in July, WMAQ-TV reported it was a strategic foreclosure. The value of the estate had plunged from an estimated $5.2 million to $3.8 million in the span of one year, and Kelly had stopped making payments in an effort to get the loan modified. Now that the custom home is worth less than he owes, Forbes reported on December 14, 2011, that the Grammy-winner is listing the property as a $1.595 million short sale.

    The 22,000-square-foot mansion was built in 1997 and sits on a private, wooded lot surrounded by 12-foot high concrete and wrought iron wall, according to Forbes. The original loan Kelly was issued for the home in 1999 was for $3.5 million. In August, Kelly sold his former 8,000-square-foot Lakeview property for $2.74 million.

    As Forbes noted, the R&B singer is no stranger to legal trouble. In June 2008, he was acquitted of child pornography charges in a high-profile trial, and three years later Kelly’s former manager sued the singer for breach of oral contract and fraud. A month after that, he was hit with a tax lien for $837,000.

    While Kelly might not represent the average homeowner in need of foreclosure help , his story still demonstrates the effect the housing market is having on everyone-even the rich and famous. If you too have been unsuccessful in getting your own mortgage modified but know that neither a short sale or a strategic foreclosure really suits your needs, a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy could allow you to stay in your house while helping you manage your bills.

    Is your house now worth less than you owe? How are you addressing your own negative equity situation?

    Benjamin Brand Services – Chicago bankruptcy lawyer