Any major sports fan in Manchester knows that professional athletes don’t always have all the money the public would expect. There are numerous stories of major sports starts who have filed for bankruptcy because they have become overburdened with debt. Take, for example, Allen Iverson, one of the most well-known basketball players of the last 20 years. He is underwater in debt, in part because of high child support payments. His ex-wife is asking him to set up a trust of more than 1 million dollars just to cover child support.
So the recent announcement that a rookie for the Philadelphia 76ers has put his salary in a trust may have raised some eyebrows in New Hampshire. For the next three years, the 27-year-old basketball player will not be able to access his money unless a trustee gives him permission. It seems that the young man is attempting to avoid some of the financial pitfalls that his colleagues have made.
And it is not just Iverson who is in financial trouble. Data shows that 78 percent of former NFL players have declared bankruptcy within five years of retirement, slightly higher than the 60 percent of former NBA players who have done the same. The NBA has even started teaching new players about their finances and how to preserve any money they do earn, all in an effort to give their players some financial literacy.
These programs could be a great benefit to players, but they are the kinds of programs to which most people in New Hampshire don’t have access. For some people, they have learned the hard way what insurmountable debt can do. For them, consulting a bankruptcy attorney to learn about their options may be the first step in a move toward financial recovery.
Source: ABC News, “Philadelphia 76ers Rookie Puts Salary in Trust: A Smart Choice?” Susanna Kim, Dec. 3, 2013