There are a few main causes of bankruptcy that drive the bulk of bankruptcy cases. We have explored those consistently in this blog for nearly a year. They include medical debt, job loss, and credit card debt, among others.

But every person who needs debt relief also has a unique set of challenges. Sometimes, those challenges are so spectacular that the person becomes nationally known. Such is the case with Casey Anthony, the Florida woman who was accused - but ultimately acquitted - of killing her daughter.

A week ago, the 26-year-old woman filed for bankruptcy protection. She called it a step toward closure as she works to rebuild her life. In her consumer bankruptcy filing, Anthony listed debts of nearly $800,000 and assets of only a little over $1,000.

Anthony's case attracted attention across the country after her 2-year-old daughter disappeared in 2008. Anthony eventually stood trial for killing the girl in 2011. She was acquitted after her attorney argued that the girl had drowned accidentally in the family's own swimming pool.

Initially, however, Anthony had claimed that a baby sitter had kidnapped the girl. The baby sitter in question ended up suing Anthony for defamation.

Anthony's legal woes only escalated from there. She was also sued by the meter reader who found her daughter's body; he contends that Anthony's attorneys wrongly portrayed him as a possible murderer after he found the little girl's body. And of course Anthony owes large amounts to the attorney who defended her at trial.

Her creditors also include a Texas search firm. The firm claims Anthony owes over $100,000 for commissioning an extensive search for her daughter - despite the fact that the daughter was already dead.

Obviously Anthony's behavior has left much to be desired as her saga has played out. But her desire for debt relief makes perfect sense. You don't have to be morally pure to seek a fresh start.

Source: "Casey Anthony files for bankruptcy, nearly $800,00 in debt," Los Angeles Times, 1-27-13

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