Donald Trump’s Bankruptcies

Billionaire Donald Trump has kept himself in the limelight throughout his career. He started out working for his father’s company in real estate then quickly rose to fame as a casino mogul when he purchased the Taj Mahal and several other Atlantic City casinos. His notoriety spread when he branched out into reality television, and now he’s even testing his skills in politics.

Not everything has gone perfectly in Trump’s career, however, as he has several bankruptcies under his belt. He shows no embarrassment towards his financial history, and even brags about how well his companies have fared through the bankruptcy process. During a Republican presidential debate, he stated, “I have used the laws of this country…the [bankruptcy] chapter laws, to do a great job for my company, for my employees, for my family.”

Trump has never filed for personal bankruptcy, but he has used Chapter 11 bankruptcy to restructure his businesses four times. The first bankruptcy was probably the most personally detrimental one that Trump has had to file. In 1991 his Trump Taj Mahal Casino went under. In order to fund the restructuring, Trump had to give up a yacht, his Trump Shuttle airline, and half of his ownership stake in the Taj Mahal Casino. The largest creditor at the time was Carl Icahn, who held $400 million in bonds.

Less than a year later, in 1992, Trump was back in the bankruptcy court for Trump Castle Associates, a company that oversaw several of his casinos. This bankruptcy included the Trump Plaza Hotel in New York, the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, and the Trump Castle Casino Resort. During the filing, Trump gave up half of his interest in the New York hotel, but retained his control over the other locations.

After a lengthy break, Trump returned to the bankruptcy court in 2004 for his Trump Hotel and Casino Resorts. This included a restructuring for several of his Atlantic City casinos and a riverboat resort in Indiana. During the proceedings, the company shed $500 million in debt and Trump turned over a sizeable amount of the company to bond holders. However, Trump remained the majority shareholder to stay in control.

Trump’s most recent bankruptcy occurred in 2009 for Trump Entertainment Resorts after the company missed a bond payment of $53.1 million. This marked the end of Trump’s reign as an Atlantic City casino owner. He resigned from the board and gave up his stake in the company, though his name remained on some of the casinos.

In 2014, the Trump Taj Mahal and Trump Plaza filed for bankruptcy once again. Trump responded by suing to have his name removed in order to solidify the fact that he no longer had a connection to the failing casinos. Trump stated during the debate that he’s glad he got out of the Atlantic City casino business when he did, “I had the good sense, and I’ve gotten a lot of credit in the financial pages, seven years ago I left Atlantic City before it totally cratered.”

Trump’s departure from that business hasn’t seemed to hurt him as he developed his career in different ways, and his many visits to bankruptcy court didn’t hold him back at all. No matter what your opinion on Trump as a person, it’s hard not to admire his ability to move forward after experiencing huge setbacks. He’s a good example of how filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy doesn’t mean the end of your career.

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How to pack your storage container correctly in these 5 easy steps (an infographic)

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How to Pack Your Storage Container

When preparing to put some of your belongings into storage for any amount of time, there are several things to take into consideration. Different types of items need to be packed differently, depending on factors such as fragility, size, and weight. Above is a convenient infographic detailing the most important steps. Below we’ll provide an extended list of guidelines to follow when preparing your storage containers:

Wrapping Tips

  • Make an inventory. Write a list of everything you are putting into storage as you pack them.
  • Pack as many items as you can into boxes. They protect your belongings more than wraps.
  • Reinforce the bottom of boxes with tape.
  • Put a lid on it. You don’t want your items falling out or getting dusty while being stored.
  • Wrap up your delicates. Use bubble wrap, crumpled paper, foam peanuts, or other fillers to ensure that fragile items don’t shift around and break no matter how far you have to move them.
  • Do NOT pack perishables/dried foods. Insects and rodents can hitch a ride to your storage and breed. Spoiled food will cause odors.
  • Evenly distribute weight. This makes the containers easier to carry and also reduces the chances of items shifting around in transit.
  • Put heavy items in smaller boxes, lighter items in larger boxes. No one wants to lift a huge box of books!
  • Pack tightly. Boxes shouldn’t bulge or cave in. You can use crumpled paper or other fillers to get rid of empty space.
  • Use special boxes on certain items. Picture frames, mirrors, and flat-screen TVs should be bubble wrapped and placed in specialized boxes.
  • Take extra care with lamps. Remove all light bulbs and wrap and box the lampshades separately from the posts.
  • Label all boxes.
  • Protect your furniture with moving blankets. You can use moving bands (giant rubber bands) or shrink-wrap to stabilize moving blankets. Tape is more difficult to remove.
  • Wrap soft furniture with plastic. This includes couches, mattresses, etc. Use mattress covers or stretch wrap.
  • Cover appliances. Use cardboard or moving blankets.
  • Use moisture absorbers. These can reduce the formation of mold, mildew, and odors.

Truck Packing Tips

  • Dollies can save your back while moving around heavy boxes and furniture.
  • Put heavy items at the back end of the truck. Our trucks load at an angle, and this prevents heavy items from crushing lighter ones. Other moving trucks may require you to evenly distribute the weight.
  • Pack the truck wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling. You can use all available space.
  • Place heavier boxes on the bottom. By putting lighter boxes on top, you avoid crushing them.
  • Fill spaces with small and large items. You don’t have to put all your boxes in one area and all your furniture in another.
  • Tie down your belongings a section at a time. Mattresses and other soft furniture can be used to hold smaller items in place.
  • Secure the truck with a lock when unattended.

Feel free to contact us with any further questions you might have about moving your stuff into storage. Keeping your belongings safe is our primary concern.

Molycorp Files for Bankruptcy

Molycorp Files for Bankruptcy

Background

Molycorp Inc., the sole U.S. provider of rare earth materials, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June of 2015. Rare earths are a group of 17 metals (including neodymium, lanthanum, and cerium) that are used in high-tech communications, transportation, and industry such as batteries, magnets, and alloys.

The market for rare earths has dramatically wavered over the past few years. Prices steeply rose in 2011 when China restricted its exports. This cost increase concerned U.S. lawmakers who understood that many of our weapons rely on such materials from China. As a result, interest rose in Molycorp’s Mountain Pass Mine in California, since this is the U.S.’s only rare earth source.

Molycorp owns the largest rare earth deposit outside of China and also makes specialized products out of them. It operates in 10 countries, but its European and Asian branches are not part of the restructuring plan at this time.

Financing

Since 2011, rare earth prices have plummeted as consumers search for cheaper solutions, and Mountain Pass experienced delays. Molycorp has reported annual financial losses for three years straight. In 2010, the initial company shares sold at $14 apiece. In 2011, they rose as high as $79.16, giving the company a market value of over $5 billion. When the company filed for bankruptcy, its stock was priced at 36 cents.

Molycorp listed assets of $2.49 billion and liabilities of $1.79 billion in their Chapter 11 filing. The company’s creditors have offered to provide $225 million in financing to support the company while it undergoes Chapter 11 restructuring. The plan includes the discharge of over $700 million in unsecured notes. Also, holders of $650 million in 10% senior secured notes have been requested to swap their debt for a majority stake in the company’s reorganization.

Filing for Bankruptcy During a Divorce

Filing for bankruptcy during a divorce is a stressful situation made even worse when you have to do both at the same time! It’s crucial to understand how these processes will affect each other now and in the future. Here are some frequently asked questions about this situation and suggested solutions:

Should I file for bankruptcy before or after my divorce?

It is more beneficial to file for bankruptcy first. The initial fees are identical if you file for joint or individual bankruptcy, but in the long run you can save time and money in court fees by filing together rather than separately. Also, filing for bankruptcy beforehand may reduce some divorce costs. However, you have to take into consideration how well you and your spouse will work together during the bankruptcy proceedings if you are undergoing an emotional split.

Which type of bankruptcy should I choose?

Whether you choose Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy depends on your financial situation, and your marital status can affect eligibility for one or the other.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharges unsecured debts (debts that have no collateral, such as credit cards and medical bills). The removal of such debts can be accomplished within a matter of months. However, if you file for Chapter 7 before your divorce, it’s possible that your combined finances might put you over the line for eligibility. If this is a problem, it would be best to file Chapter 7 after your divorce so your ex-spouse’s income does not affect the process.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy differs greatly from Chapter 7. It takes longer to complete (between 3-5 years), and you are expected to adhere to a plan of repayment instead of having the majority of debt discharged. For these reasons, you should wait until after your divorce is complete before initiating Chapter 13 bankruptcy since the divorce would (hopefully!) be long over before the repayment plan is complete.

How are our debts and properties handled in married versus single households?

Each state has different rules governing which properties can be exempted during bankruptcy. Some areas may allow you to double your exemptions when filing for joint bankruptcy. However, if you don’t have enough property that qualifies for exemption, filing separately would probably be the better option.

As long as you are not at each other’s throats, it can be easier to pay off debts together rather than individually. It takes time in court to allocate debts to each spouse. Also, creditors may still consider both of you accountable for the debt even after the divorce goes through. For example, if you have a joint credit card with accrued debt that is allocated to your spouse during the divorce, the credit card company will nevertheless consider you responsible if that person does not handle it.

If you are still confused about how your bankruptcy and divorce will affect each other, call us at Hathaway Law today. We would be happy to help you navigate the confusing paperwork and other issues that arise during these stressful procedures.

Quiksilver Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in California

Quiksilver was founded in Australia in 1969 and quickly became a top provider of clothing in surfing hotspots in the United States. It has been represented by huge surfing names such as Kelly Slater and Tom Carroll. After hitting its peak in the ‘90s, the company has faced increasing competition and decreasing demand, especially in the U.S., and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on September 9th, 2015.

Quiksilver has been steadily losing customers to fast-fashion brands such as Forever 21 and H&M. Surfwear was highly trendy in the ‘90s and early 2000s, but has been losing popularity recently in the U.S. market. Quiksilver’s European and Asian-Pacific markets are still going strong, so they are not going to be involved in the bankruptcy filing. The company is currently based in Huntington Beach, California.

In the filing, the company listed assets of over $100 million and liabilities over $500 million. Oaktree Capital will provide more than $175 million in financing as part of a “debtor-in-possession” plan. Under a “Plan Sponsor Agreement,” Oaktree Capitol has promised to provide all funding necessary for the filing. It aims to convert the substantial debt holdings into stock and become the company’s majority owner.

By filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, Quiksilver will be able to continue operating while executing a reorganization plan. The plan unfortunately includes closing several branches. Its shares have dropped nearly 80% this year, as the company struggled with shipping and accounting problems. In March, the first-quarter earnings report was delayed because of a “revenue cut-off issue,” and CEO Andy Mooney left the company.

New CEO Pierre Agnes has stated, “After careful consideration, we have taken this difficult but necessary step to secure a bright future for Quiksilver.” The company remains optimistic as it takes this difficult reorganizational step. By filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in California, Quiksilver has a chance to retain its foothold in the U.S.

If you need more information about filing Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in California call Daniel A Higson, Attorney at Law at Hathaway Law Firm 805-644-7111