Trump Leaves Out His Companies That Went Bankrupt: Reality Check

ICYMI: The GOP Debate in 3 Minutes

Donald Trump says he’s never declared bankruptcy. True, but his companies have -- not once, but four times.

The Claim: “I never filed for bankruptcy,” the Republican presidential candidate said in response to a jab from competitor Carly Fiorina, the former chief executive officer of Hewlett-Packard Co. who faulted Trump’s business record. “Almost everyone in Atlantic City is either in trouble or filed for bankruptcy.”

The Facts: While Trump hasn’t filed personally, his corporations sought bankruptcy protection in 1991, 1992, 2004 and 2009.

The first, the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, was reorganized under a prepackaged bankruptcy -- a quick, debtor-led court process that eases a debt load. The second was the Plaza Hotel in New York. In that case, a federal bankruptcy judge approved a plan that left Trump as chief executive officer, but left him without pay for the job or a role in day-to-day operations, the New York Times reported at the time.

Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts Inc. filed for bankruptcy in Camden, New Jersey, in 2004, the Associated Press reported. Finally, Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. filed for bankruptcy in February six years ago. That filing came days after Trump quit the board, and listed assets of $2.06 billion and debt of $1.74 billion as of Dec. 31. The company had missed a $53 million interest payment at the start of December, and filed just before an extended grace period to make a defaulted coupon payment ended.

The takeaway: Trump’s claim, while technically correct, could mislead.

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