Olympic athletes excel in their respective sports because they are very, very good at what they do. They can leap higher, swim, run or ski faster, and jump longer than anyone else in the world. In the case of Rulon Gardner, he was able to defeat the Russian in Greco-Roman heavyweight wrestling in 2000. In 2001, he won the Greco-Roman world title.

Unfortunately, prowess on the athletic field or gymnasium does not always translate into business prowess. It was recently reported that the former wrestling champion has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

The recent years have delivered a series of ups and downs for the former Olympian and his wife. Gardner became lost on a snowmobile trip in Wyoming and lost a toe to frostbite. He was in a serious motorcycle accident and also injured his wrist playing basketball. Currently, he and his wife run the Rulon Gardner Elite Training Center in Logan. Utah.

Gardner and his wife owe nearly $3 million and have a monthly income of $3,116. By filing Chapter 7, or a liquidation bankruptcy, the couple will have the debts as well as assets liquidated. Among their assets are a $430,560 home, a Harley Road King motorcycle valued at $5,000 and an Olympic gold medal valued at $100.

For this particular couple, the Chapter 7 will allow them to get a fresh start. Gardner is just 41 years old, so there is plenty of time to rebuild and save for retirement. If the couple had a more significant income stream, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy may have been a viable option. In any case, all available options should be considered before filing for bankruptcy.

Source: USA Today, “Rulon Gardner files for bankruptcy,” Gary Mihoces, Sep. 18, 2012

At our Orlando law office we assist our clients with Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings as well as Chapter 13 bankruptcies.