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Bankruptcy forces NFL star to auction home

Personal bankruptcy is a legal process filled with difficult but important choices. Debtors must choose wisely how best to manage their remaining assets while coming to terms with the financial consequences set before them. The decision to relinquish the security and comfort of a house is a choice that anybody may need to make, from blue-collar workers to professional athletes.

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers star and Super Bowl champion Warren Sapp will auction his Windermere home November 1st as part of his ongoing personal bankruptcy proceedings to tackle mounting bills and debts.

Like many other Floridians filing for personal bankruptcy, Sapp arrived at his current situation through economic factors outside of his control. The former Buccaneer lineman had initially planned to finance and build a low-income housing project in Fort Pierce, but lost much more than his investment after the market took a downturn.

Sapp, whose lost investment cost him 11 months of garnished NFL wages, saw a stack of unpaid bills continue to rise over the same period until it became clear that he would need to auction his $7 million, 10,000-square-foot home as a more desirable alternative to jail time. As a result, much of Sapp's debt will be repaid and he will avoid ending up behind bars.

Although many homeowners in debt can't claim lavish amenities such as the water slide, lazy river, and two-story wine cellar that are included in the mansion Sapp is soon to lose, his is an example of how the debt relief process is one of unattractive yet crucial decisions.

Source: Orlando Sentinel, "Auction set for Warren Sapp's Windermere home," Mary Shanklin, Oct. 3, 2012

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