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Tennessee political candidate addresses past bankrtuptcy

A Tennessee woman who's running for office isn't hiding her bankruptcy filing from over two decades ago from voters. In fact, she credits it with leading to her career as an investment banker and teacher.

Kimberly Wiggins, who is running as an independent in the upcoming election on Aug. 2 for Montgomery County Trustee, acknowledged the bankruptcy, which occurred when she was just 18, after a political consultant filed a complaint against her.

The consultant complained to the state that Wiggins hadn't listed the bankruptcy on a document she filed with the Campaign Finance Ethics Commission. However, even he now acknowledges that it's not an issue. Candidates are required to list only bankruptcies that occurred within the past five years -- something the consultant who brought the bankruptcy to light says he didn't realize.

In a video posted on Facebook last month and in interviews with the media, Wiggins has discussed the bankruptcy, which she filed when she was struggling with debt and that was discharged in 2000. She says that following the bankruptcy, "I was inspired to pursue a career in banking and investment services, both to further my own education on money management and also to educate other people on how to be financially responsible." She has taught finance to university students.

Wiggins has used the publicity around the bankruptcy from her youth to tout her "honesty and transparency" with the voters. She says, "Over the course of this campaign, I've talked candidly about the parts of my past that are good, but also the parts that are bad."

While bankruptcy isn't the right solution for everyone, it can help people get out from under the burden of debt and make a fresh start. Experienced Tennessee bankruptcy attorneys help people decide whether it's the best course for them and, if it is, help them through the process.

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