Casey Anthony bankruptcy debts forgiven

2 defamation lawsuits allowed to proceed against Anthony

(Red Huber/Pool)

ORLANDO, Fla. – A federal bankruptcy judge on Wednesday granted Casey Anthony a discharge, forgiving hundreds of thousands of dollars in debts and preventing other creditors from attempting to collect.

However, Judge K. Rodney May is allowing two lawsuits filed against Anthony to proceed. Zenaida Gonzalez and Roy Kronk are suing Anthony for defamation, claiming Anthony framed them for murdering her daughter, Caylee. If Anthony loses those cases, she could potentially be required to pay damages.

At the time Anthony filed for bankruptcy in January, she claimed to have only $1,084 in assets, while reporting at least $792,119 in debts. According to Anthony's bankruptcy filing, she owed $500,000 to attorney Jose Baez, who successfully defended Anthony in her 2011 murder trial. Anthony acknowledged owing nearly $291,000 in costs and fees to the Orange County Clerk of Court and various law enforcement agencies that investigated her daughter's disappearance. 

The discharge order eliminates Anthony's legal obligation to pay most debts, according to court papers. Some debts, such as taxes, court fines and criminal restitution are not forgiven under bankruptcy protection.

In November, May ruled that Gonzalez and Kronk may continue to pursue their defamation lawsuits against Anthony. 

Gonzalez claims Anthony ruined her reputation by saying Gonzalez was the nanny who kidnapped her daughter Caylee. At trial, Anthony's defense claimed the toddler drowned in the family's swimming pool. Kronk, who found the toddler's remains blocks from Anthony's house, claims Anthony harmed him by suggesting Kronk may have disposed of the child's remains.