Bankruptcy 101: How to seek Chapter 11 protection, which can help you reorganize while shielding you from creditors

February 13, 2009
Business Week

© Business Week, author Jeremy Quittner.

Immunicon's glory days were in 2004. The company, which had developed a tumor screening technology for cancer patients, had landed $85 million in venture capital, then went on to raise $55 million in an initial public offering. Each year, sales more than doubled. "We believed that Immunicon had the potential to be a company with a $500 million-plus market cap," remembers Byron Hewett, Immunicon's chief executive at the time.

As you're lining up financing, you should also be preparing to file a petition in your local bankruptcy court, describing your reorganization plan. Once you file, the proceedings become a matter of public record. "You are in a glass house at this point," says Joshua Klein, bankruptcy attorney at Fox Rothschild in Philadelphia. "Anyone can take a look at the company." You'll also be required to file monthly operating reports, including your balance sheet and bank statements.