Widow of philanthropist lists files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy

Whenever a seemingly wealthy individual files for bankruptcy in Minnesota, many are often shocked. The thought is typically that once someone becomes wealthy, money will never again be an issue. However, this is not always true and there are plenty of people who struggle to keep up with their expenses after becoming wealthy.

Take for example the widow of a philanthropist who many thought had an endless supply of money. Now that he has passed, his wife is left with more debt than she can handle. Recently, she decided the best option was to file for personal bankruptcy.

For the widow, according to the Chapter 7 filing, her only income is the roughly $2,200 a month she receives in Social Security. And, while her filing does list being the vice president of Osborn Research Center LLC as her occupation, she reportedly does not have a regular monthly income from the business. In fact, the bankruptcy filing does not list any income from the business from 2010 or 2009 either.

In terms of debts though, she does seem to have plenty, including about $400,000 worth of claims against her $1.3 million home. According to the filing, she also owes close to $50,000 for medical expenses related to her husband's death.

Before filing for bankruptcy, the widow did try to get out of debt too. This was done by selling $280,000 worth of vehicles and selling nearly $900,000 worth of personal items, including more than $300,000 worth of jewelry.

However, this still was not enough. With her largest creditor -- the bank tied to the mortgage loan -- not giving her a break, she decided Chapter 7 bankruptcy was the only hope she had of getting the family's finances back in order.

In hearing of her personal bankruptcy, many people were no doubt shocked. Many most likely assumed she was left enough to never have to worry again. However, this story goes to show that things are not always as they would seem and that even with trying to get out of debt, sometimes it is just not possible without filing for bankruptcy.

Source: Arkansas Business, "Mitzi Osborne Owes $1.2 Million in Bankruptcy," July 15, 2013

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