Neil: 'We are not bankrupt'

Ottawa Senators' Chris Neil has denied reports that he is bankrupt. (REUTERS/Mark Blinch)

Ottawa Senators' Chris Neil has denied reports that he is bankrupt. (REUTERS/Mark Blinch)

BRUCE GARRIOCH, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:23 PM ET

Chris Neil came to his own defence Tuesday night and said as far as he’s concerned any financial issues with his failed construction company are in the past.

The Senators winger said Neil Bros. Construction filed for creditor protection in 2006, and, through a trustee, met all the financial obligations outlined in a deal agreed to by all the company’s creditors.

According to a report from his trustee, the company owed its creditors $2.4 million. The proposal that was agreed upon reportedly resulted in Neil paying creditors 20 cents on the dollar.

Neil insisted he’s met all his commitments as outlined in the proposal and made his last payment to creditors in April, 2009. He expects the trustee will report to a judge in London Wednesday that all monies have been dispersed and that the file should be closed.

“This is over and done with. This is old news,” said Neil. “I went about it the right way. I did all the legal stuff I had to do. I held up my obligation on everything. I paid back all my debt that I owed, according to the proposal.

“I had to meet some requirements and I overcame them. I’ve put it behind me. You learn some valuable lessons, that’s for sure.”

Neil said the business has been closed since it ran into financial trouble in 2006. He was in the business with his brothers Jeff, Dan and Jay. He said the assets were sold off to assist in paying creditors.

“It started off as a family business, but I was on the hook for everything because it was in my name,” said Neil. “I didn’t know any better. That’s kind of what happened. Everything was in my name.”

Neil’s wife Caitlin said she dealt with most of the legal proceedings in the case and insists they never filed for bankruptcy. Instead, they made a deal with the creditors.

“Chris never declared bankruptcy. We are not bankrupt. We were never bankrupty. Neither of us have ever declared bankruptcy,” said Caitlin. “What we did was file a proposal to the creditors. We had to have a meeting with the creditors involved and a majority vote agreed on the proposal that was put together by our trustee.

“A majority had to vote for the proposal to pass, which it did obviously, and we were told we had to pay a certain amount of money and we paid that over the term they gave us — in full. We’re talking well over a year ago that we finished paying this back.”

The Neils hope the case will be finally closed Wednesday.

“We had a pretty heavy financial burden that we had to pay back,” said Caitlin Neil.


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