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Small Business Owner Filing Chapter 7 Personal Bankruptcy

I started a small antique and furniture business in October of this year.  I have been losing money since.  I was in such shock,depression and fear that I have not been able to function and have made a lot of mistakes and bad decisions based on fear.  My goal was to get through the holidays which I did.  Now I have no other choice but to file for bankruptcy.  I had convinced myself after the holidays that the only solution to my problem was suicide and waisted 2 months trying to figure out how to do it.  This past Monday I realized how foolish and selfish that would be.  I am meeting a lawyer on Monday and I am scared to death.  I know it is going to be hard and I will probably lose everything I have worked for in my life but I am not willing to lose my soul over money and things.  I don't want my situation to cause my family and friends to hurt and I know it will.  I will be brutally honest and post how I manage through this mess I have created.  There is not a lot of information from people who have gone through this hell.  I hope my experience will help someone like me.  I would appreciate any advice or words of hope.      

jobryant27 jobryant27 46-50 11 Responses Mar 7, 2009

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OK the I got one for ya. Maybe it will make some people feel better about there issues. 26 years ago at age 20 I got into a little trouble wit the law. I had met a girl at a party and we ended up in my car fooling around. Nothing forced or anything like that. It turned out she was 15. I did not know this at the time. OOOOPS. I did not go to prison but had some legal issues to deal with. In 1996 I was forced onto the sex offender registration. It ruined my life back then. I eneded up divorced because of anger issues and lost everything, filed bankr. as well. I rebuilt my life and did well. In 06 I purchased a home with a long time girlfriend. Then in 07 with more retroactive law changes I was put onto the public internet for sex offenders. This caused so many issued it made 96 seem like a walk in the park. I had been a chef for two decades and the place I was running for the last ten years was closing down for good. I soon found because of the public list no one will hire me now. My girlfriend has a high end job and the talk of her boyfriend started to show she may lose her job. Seven months ago she left me without notice, just left while I was away on business for a weekend. Came home to nothing. I could not afford the house on my own so it was forclosed on in Feb. 2011. I had started two seperate small businesses in the last two years. They show no profit yet but have great potential. One is going to be in Oprah magazine in July 2011. Now I live in a small small apartment and am very lucky I am able to collect $800 month unemployment, but that runs out in two months time. I have credit card debt that I can't even begin to pay off. The house was sold at about $60,000 less than owed, great! The girlfriend is no place to be found of course. So in a nut shell. People think I am a sex pervert against kids and I am not at all. I have never had anothor "crime" like that and did not intend that one. It has been 26 years since that situation and I am still pursacuted every day just for being alive. The gov. says I am not being further punished as that would not be legal. I have no way off of this list other than to die. I have no rights or legal optoions. I could not afford the a lawyer anyway. Justice needs to be paid for like everything else. I don't know if I can make any kind of income from my businesses and may be in the street in a few months. HOWEVER even though I have pad days of what the F. I get up every morning and tell myself I am going to do the best and work the hardest I can to make things go in the direction I want. I go to bed every night knowing I did my best and there is nothing else I can do. If this ends up not being good enough then oh will, what can I say. I am looking to file a bankr. for the second time in my life. Really it is caused by this registration. It is all relavent for sure. Credit is a nice thing to have. However I view it as nothing more than coporat e americas way of judging people. It is a system set up to make you fail. the worse your credit the more they can charge you. A game of numbers so big business can sink there hand deeper into your wallet. A home and "things" are not everything at all. I have had many good things. Made good money. traveled a good part of the world, loved and lost many times. I am seen as a preditor to people but am not. Be happy with what you have and work on making things as you want them. As long as you can truly say you have done your best then you have nothing to fear and nothing to be ashamed of at all. As for me, I don't know what will happen yet. Maybe I will become homeless thanks to the list. Maybe I will be a huge success. maybe I will have nothing left to lose so I will just stop there registration game and let them put me into prison as I have no other place to go. I never went to prison in my life and do not want to. Yes, in American you can end up in prison for a situation that took place 26 years prior that you did not go to prison for then. HMMMMM, think you have issues to deal with? I am not saying that for simpathy at all. I hope my issues may make others see there situations are there but could be worse. Sorry if I offended anyone with my story of the reg. It is the truth and I am not a danger to anyone at all. I know this is not the proper forum for that type of issue. Like I said it is all relevant. I do ask that if you every have the chance to vote on these sex offender laws that you think about people like me. There are tens of thousands in my shoes. Oh, ya, you all pay to track people like me. Just so you no. good luck and I hope you feel better.

I got my personal bankruptcy 7 discharged 3 months ago, due to my failed small business. About 12 months ago I chose to sell my house for $100K less than I had in it just to get out from under the payment and protect my partners credit rating. For the last 9 months I have been on disability due to the major depression I am suffering from. Suicidal thoughts have been pervasive throughout all of this and I continue to fight them. I get psychiatric help and am on medication. Everyday I fight feelings of failure. Someday I hope to feel better. I'm posting this so that it might help someone else in a similar situation. Good luck to all of you reading this.

Hi Coffee Lady. I think people are still watching this post. The job salary change sucks. On the plus side you're not going to lose everything - the creditors don't win if you are thrown out in the street. They make more money from having you reaffirm the debt and pay it over a longer time. Is there a reason you're buying the building? It sounds like you're in a cash crunch now and conserving it is important. It might be that it would reduce your monthly expenses, but cash is critical for a small business and that should be a very careful decision. <br />
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Getting medicare or SS isn't hard, you just need to set yourself up as an employee of your company and might be something you do long term. It does increase expenses so be careful there. <br />
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I assume you've checked into better jobs your husband might be able to get or overtime he might be able to work at the current job. If not definitely look. <br />
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Here's another thing to think about. Could you hire and train someone to do your job at the business and get a job that pays more than you pay them? This is a delicate process, but if you have experienced help or a well defined business process it is possible. It's worth thinking about anyway.<br />
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I hope some of this helps. You can be sure you're not alone - it seems like everyone is taking a hit these days.

this is probably an old post site but I am about to lose everythng. My husband went from a 130k job to a 49k job. I have been self employed for the past 20 years and haven't paid into medicare or SS. Our house is mortgaged to the hilt. We are buying our building for the business. My mother left me her house which we have rented. I don't want to lose everything. There is no silver lining I can see. I love my husband but I just want out.

I'm going through this hell right now. It is no fun. Did you see how many other people were in the attorneys office? We are not alone. I never would've believed that my business would have failed after two years. It has been a downhill spiral since October. I never in a million years thought that my husband and I would file for bankrupty. We were reluctant but there is just no other way. Hang in're not alone.

I am in a different scenario I think as I am facing "personal" bankruptcy due to going into debt to better myself by starting a small business. However, my business hasn't kicked off yet. My concern is how will my "personal" bankruptcy affect my small business and who will want to do business with someone who filed bankruptcy? If you have any thoughts to share I would be pleased to hear from you. Thank you.

I am new to this site so I don't know where to look for the updates. I hope you are finding your way. As a new business owner, this is scary to read but I appreciate you being real about your experience.<br />
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If you're up to it, looking back, were there warning signs? What do you know now that you wish you knew then?


I was there 2 years ago..and many wil come! Its not easy and I fellt like **** and thought everybody was looking my way....You will get a fresh start, many hard days will come, but many wonderful days also...most wonderful. This is hard for 2 weeks, but I am damned shore you will feel better after your talk to your lawyer...Be honest and do your best, you will get out stronger than when you got in...Good luck! My granny always said " in 50 years, everything is forgotten" Lol...thats true...Nobody is thinking about my bankroptcy...its 2 years ago....

If you read many stories about people who are now wealthy, you will realize that one of the common denominators is the willingness to take chances. If you take chances, sometimes you will win and sometimes you will lose. A man I respected a great deal once told me, "I love to make mistakes. I just try not to make the same one twice."<br />
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It's already clear from your brief post that you have the rational ability to look back and be honest about your errors. That's all they are, errors - not sins, not felonies.<br />
You will come out of this the way we come out of failed love affairs, jobs that didn't fit us, auto accidents - wiser, stronger, and more able to make better choices next time around. The most vulnerable at-risk person there is is someone who has never been hurt - when hurt does come (and it eventually will) they're not prepared for it.<br />
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Stand tall and realize that the reason bankruptcy laws exist is because you are not the first and you won't be the last (I'm sure it feels that way, but you're not). Good luck! Maybe in 10 years we'll be reading about you in Fortune 500. And don't ever even consider ending it all because of money (it's worth less every day, while you are worth more every day!).

Been there and done that about 20 yrs ago.<br />
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There is nothing to be ashamed of. You made a mistake. OK a big mistake. You got over your head. At least you recognize it and seeking a lawyer to help you to resolve it.<br />
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You are not alone. It is not the end of the world.<br />
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Look at it like a blessing in disguise. You get a fresh start. It is like getting a second chance with a clean slate. Just LEARN, LEARN, LEARN from it. <br />
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It is just one of life's lessons. We've all had road blocks before. You will get through this too. You can do it !!<br />
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I am glad you decided to stick around. It won't be easy but you will be a better person from the experience.<br />
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Best of luck to you. Keep your chin up. :-)