Parent company of Reader’s Digest in bankruptcy again

The parent company of one of the world’s most widely read magazines is in bankruptcy for the second time in less than four years. RDA Holdings Co., the parent of Reader’s Digest magazine, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the Southern District of New York in February. The company, which also owns Taste of Home magazine and 21 other publications around the world, says the move is designed to cut additional debt as it continues its restructuring process. It plans to continue publishing the popular Reader’s Digest magazine while looking to sell off its international assets. The company hopes to exit bankruptcy within six months. Like many other print publications, Reader’s Digest has seen its fortunes wane due to online competition. The publication had a print circulation of more than 15 million in 1995. By the end of 2012, that number had dropped precipitously to 5.5 million. In an effort to address the decline in revenue, the company has been selling off some of its assets, including its food website and the Every Day with Rachael Ray magazine. Both were sold to publisher Meredith Corp. RDA’s first Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing occurred in 2009. The company emerged from bankruptcy… Continue reading

Girls Gone Wild’ gone bankrupt

New Yorkers may have heard that the company responsible for the “Girls Gone Wild” series of videos and magazines is seeking bankruptcy protection. GGW Brands, LLC, and its subsidiaries, GGW Magazines and GGW Events, filed forChapter 11 bankruptcy in late February 2013. In a statement issued regarding the filing, the company said that while it is strong financially, the move was necessary to restructure its legal affairs after a number of disputed legal claims against the company’s founder, Joe Francis. In its federal bankruptcy court filing, GGW listed more than $16 million in disputed claims, including a $10.3 million judgment awarded to Wynn Resorts Limited in connection with gambling debts amassed by Francis and statements he made about the casino and owner Steve Wynn. Also included was a $5.8 million judgment awarded to a woman whose image was included in a video without her authorization and various legal fees in both cases. Not included in the bankruptcy petition is a $19 million judgment that Wynn won last year in a slander case against Francis. The casino mogul brought the case after Francis claimed Wynn threatened to kill him for not paying his gambling debts. That judgment remains under appeal. When… Continue reading

Bankruptcy myths dispelled

It can be a difficult decision to file for bankruptcy. While filing for personal bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13is not something that a New York resident should enter into lightly, bankruptcy is not a death sentence. The opportunity to make a fresh financial start that bankruptcy affords often is preferable to the ongoing burden of overwhelming debt, collection actions and judgments. One common misperception is that an individual who files for bankruptcy will be unable to get a debit card or conduct electronic banking transactions. While it may be more difficult to open a new bank account after bankruptcy, your ability to obtain a pre-paid debit card should not be affected. The card will allow you to manage your banking transactions as you rebuild your credit. Another common myth is that someone who files for bankruptcy will have trouble getting a job. While many employers conduct credit checks on job applicants, federal law requires that an employer obtain the applicant’s consent before requesting a credit report and provide notice before rejecting the applicant based on the report. Many states have implemented additional limitations on the use of credit reports by employers. If you are asked to explain your… Continue reading

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