14 Stars Who Lost It All

AAA

14 Stars Who’ve Lost It All

When you're feeling the stresses of everyday life, take a moment to be grateful that even if it has been a difficult year financially, you probably haven't lost as much money as these celebrities.

Stephen Baldwin

Stephen Baldwin of "The Usual Suspects," and more recently, a reality TV star, filed for bankruptcy this past summer as a result of more than $2.3 million in personal debt including more than $1 million owed in back taxes. Baldwin became a victim of the housing market collapse after he took out a second mortgage on his $1.1 million home and became "underwater" on the loan.

Kim Basinger

If you've ever quit a job, you can be thankful that it probably didn't cost you nearly $9 million. That's how much a judge ordered Basinger to pay a film production company for failing to honor her commitment to star in the movie "Boxing Helena." Apparently she didn't save enough of her previous earnings to pay the bill; she ended up losing $19 million when she had to sell the town of Braselton, Georgia which she purchased in 1989 and had to file for bankruptcy.

Nicholas Cage

The "National Treasure" star owes a king's ransom to the IRS - more than $6 million in back taxes to be exact. He blames his former manager, Samuel J. Levin, for losing millions of dollars to risky and speculative investments and recently filed a $20 million suit against the CPA.

To settle up accounts Cage recently sold his castle in Bavaria; he also lost two of his homes in New Orleans to auction after falling into foreclosure. (A couple of letters can mean a big difference. Find out which designation you need and how to get it in CPA, CFA Or CFP - Pick Your Abbreviation Carefully.)

John Daly

In his 2006 autobiography, "My Life In and Out of the Rough: The Truth Behind All that Bull**** You Think You Know About Me," professional golfer John Daly admitted that he had lost upwards of $60 million to his gambling addiction.

Lenny Dykstra

This former New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies center fielder may have been pitching "winning" investment tips through his "Nails on the Numbers" newsletters since retiring from major league baseball but apparently he wasn't heeding his own advice.

In an April 2009 ESPN.com interview Dykstra claimed a personal fortune of $60 million but just three months later he filed for bankruptcy, stating he held just $50,000 in assets.

Zsa Zsa Gabor

Ninety-two year old Gabor was one of convicted Ponzi scheme con artist Bernard Madoff's celebrity victims. Her lawyer estimates that the actress lost $7 million to Madoff and is now having to pay off back taxes of $118,000 in addition to the loss. Actors Kevin Bacon and his wife Kyra Sedgwick were also Madoff victims. The couple reportedly lost "everything but their real estate and checking accounts" to Madoff's $50 billion scam.

Jon & Kate Gosselin

With both their marriage and TLC series ("Jon & Kate Plus 8") over, the reality TV couple, at the least, lost their $3 to $4 million salary from the cable TV company not to mention all of the freebies they have enjoyed as a result of their show including trips, clothes and toys for their brood of elementary-age children.

Victoria Gotti

Daughter of deceased mobster John Gotti, this TV reality show star ("Growing Up Gotti") filed for bankruptcy after her mansion in Long Island went into foreclosure. Blaming her financial misfortune on her ex-husband's imprisonment, she lost the home after the bank reported that she owed more than $650,000 in back mortgage payments.

Evander Holyfield

This world heavyweight boxing champion may have earned nearly $250 million during his time in the ring, but he's lost enough of that fortune to have gone into foreclosure on his 109-room home in suburban Atlanta. Holyfield cites two divorces and numerous failed business investments for his loss.

Billy Joel

He may be a musical genius but this Grammy award-winner hasn't enjoyed the same string of success when it comes to his finances. He has had to file for bankruptcy and filed a $90 million lawsuit against his former manager (and former brother-in-law) Frank Weber for losing tens of millions of dollars as a result of fraud, risky investments and unauthorized loans.

Ralph Lauren

Apparently even billionaire fashion titans aren't immune to the effects of the global recession. As people have tightened their purse strings, they are passing on designer fashion for more frugally priced outfits. The combination of fewer buyers and a massive stock market decline has put a significant $1.7 billion dent in Lauren's personal wealth.

Paul McCartney

While the former Beatle made number one hit single "Can't Buy Me Love," he learned that love can be extraordinarily expensive. Without a prenuptial agreement, his divorce from Heather Mills in 2008 cost him close to $50 million.

Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson went "on the road again" to raise the $16.7 million in back taxes he owed the IRS after filing for bankruptcy in 1990. Able to laugh at his misfortune he recorded "The IRS Tapes: Who'll Buy My Memories" to help settle the bill after the government seized his bank accounts and numerous homes, and later went on to star as a spokesperson for the tax preparation firm H&R Block in Super Bowl ads.

Michael Vick

The Philadelphia Eagles' back-up quarterback is just grateful to have a job these days. He was signed to the team after finishing a 19-month sentence at the federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas for being found guilty of a federal dog-fighting conspiracy charge. That choice cost the formerly Nike-sponsored athlete $135 million. In 2005 Vick was listed as the 33rd most powerful celebrity by Forbes magazine; three years later he was forced to declare personal bankruptcy

Conclusion

While everyone was hit by the latest recession, chances are someone else lost a whole lot more than you did. (To learn about more celebrities whose wallets have been significantly lightened, check out Celebrity Financial Failures.)
Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    7 Costly Pro Athlete Screw-Ups

    These multi-millionaires have squandered away their fortunes through bad financial decisions.
  2. Retirement

    Should You File For Bankruptcy?

    Find out how to determine whether this option will help or hurt your financial situation.
  3. Financial Advisor

    ABC's Madoff Miniseries Explores His Charm, Smarm

    An ABC miniseries on Ponzi scheme king Bernie Madoff gets inside the head of a man who was, in fact, not too big to fail.
  4. Personal Finance

    5 Ultra-Rich People Who Live Below Their Means

    How and why some crazy-rich folks have remarkably sane spending habits.
  5. Personal Finance

    Life After Bankruptcy

    Find out what you have to look forward to after filing for Chapter 7 or 13.
  6. Financial Advisor

    How to Add Celebrities to Your Client Roster

    The trick to landing celebrity clients is a subset of the skill of acquiring clients in general. Here are some strategies to help break into this world.
  7. Insights

    Rich And Careless

    We'll look at high-profile, big-money investments that turned out badly for their famous investors.
  8. Insights

    Pro Athletes And Their Bad Money Habits

    These athletes earned a lot, but they spent too much.
  9. Insights

    Celebrities Who Worked In Finance Before They Became Famous

    Find out which Hollywood stars and personalities started their working careers in the world of finance.
  10. Investing

    Saving On Bankruptcy Costs

    Going bankrupt is awful enough without worrying about ways to pay for it. Here's how to save on lawyers, filing fees and other inevitable costs.
Hot Definitions
  1. Sell-Off

    The rapid selling of securities, such as stocks, bonds and commodities. The increase in supply leads to a decline in the ...
  2. Brazil, Russia, India And China - BRIC

    An acronym for the economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China combined. It has been speculated that by 2050 these four ...
  3. Brexit

    The Brexit, an abbreviation of "British exit" that mirrors the term Grexit, refers to the possibility of Britain's withdrawal ...
  4. Underweight

    1. A situation where a portfolio does not hold a sufficient amount of a particular security when compared to the security's ...
  5. Russell 3000 Index

    A market capitalization weighted equity index maintained by the Russell Investment Group that seeks to be a benchmark of ...
  6. Enterprise Value (EV)

    A measure of a company's value, often used as an alternative to straightforward market capitalization. Enterprise value is ...
Trading Center