Having a famous name doesn't always mean there's money in the bank.
Former kid pop star Aaron Carter, 25, has filed for bankruptcy, claiming to have tax and credit debts exceeding $3.5 million while possessing just $8,232.16 in assets — just $977.16 of that in accessible cash, according to documents obtained by omg!.
Carter, the younger brother of Backstreet Boy Nick Carter, says in his court filing, dated Oct. 23, that he owes $2,204,654 to creditors, including a $1,307,648 income tax debt to the IRS, and a $31,166 American Express bill.
"Aaron filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection to alleviate past issues in an effort to move forward with his life and career," his rep tells omg! in a statement. "The overwhelming majority of the debt he is asking to be discharged is from more than 10 years ago when he was a minor and not in control of his finances.”
Chapter 7 is the most aggressive form of bankruptcy, requiring liquidation of most assets, and absolving the petitioner of the bills they owe (aka creditors will not recover the funds). The big downside is that a filing for Chapter 7 will stay on one's credit report for 10 years.
Carter's finances were handled by his parents: his dad acted as business manager, and mother was his manager. As Aaron told it earlier this year: "There was lot's of money made, hundreds of millions of dollars." But, eventually problems arose between the singer and his folks about where that money was going. "When I was 13-14, I started paying attention to what my mom and dad were doing [with my money], and I wanted to know about stuff. I started getting familiar about taxes. ... I was becoming very inquisitive and my parents didn't like that." He eventually cut business ties with his parents.
He lists a hefty debt to music company Live Nation Merchandise Inc. to the tune of $575,340, and a $89,000 bill from talent management company Wright Entertainment Group LLC, which Carter notes he is disputing.
In the documents, Carter lists just a few physical assets: a 61-inch flat-screen television and cell phone valued together at $500, two MacBook computers, two headset microphones, a mini keyboard, portable Beats by Dre speaker, guitar, a Louis Vuitton backpack, duffle bag, printer, and a Brietling watch ($3,750).
Heartbreakingly, Carter, who will be surrendering his listed property, also lists his dog, valuing him at zero dollars.
Once an international pop star, Aaron's first on-stage performance was opening for the Backstreet Boys and his second album, "Aaron's Party (Come Get It)," sold 1.5 million copies in the U.S. and featured his biggest hit, "I Want Candy." But the singer is no stranger to troubled times. He has been in and out of rehab for addiction issues, most recently in 2011 for Xanex, also appearing on "Celebrity Rehab 2" in 2006. He lost his 25-year-old sister in January 2012 after a reported prescription pill drug overdose.
Older brother Nick, who has had his own share of troubles with drugs and alcohol, says he helped Aaron with his sobriety. "When my brother entered rehab, I took him there," Nick told Dr. Phil in September. "It was heartbreaking, but at the same time, there was more hope." No word yet if the elder pop star, who has been back on stage with the reunited Backstreet Boys, plans to help his little bro with his current financial crisis.
Carter famously caused a feud between fellow teen stars Lindsay Lohan and Hillary Duff whom he was reportedly dating at the same time. Discussing his also-troubled ex Lohan earlier this year, Carter called for compassion.
"She just deals with struggles like we all do," he told PeterDee.TV. "We're human, you know? It's important for others to embrace somebody when they're down -- not kick them while they are down."
Here's hoping people give him the same sentiment.