Fayetteville's Lightning Electric Inc. Files Chapter 7

Perhaps you were aware that financial difficulties were visiting Lightning Electric Inc., the Fayetteville electrical contractor firm owned by Jason and Crystal Kuncl.

Those problems proved too much for the company, which filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy Oct. 12 and is now closed.

LEI, formed in 2000, covered eight states and boasted clients such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Tyson Foods Inc.

In its bankruptcy petition, LEI posted assets of $1.66 million and liabilities of $11.55 million to more than 100 creditors. The bulk of the debt is owed to Benefit Bank of Fort Smith, which has a secured claim of $3.33 million and an unsecured claim of $1.44 million.

A foreclosure suit by Benefit Bank against Kuncl Properties LLC, LEI and the Kuncls is listed on the petition as one of four cases pending in Washington County Circuit Court. The bank seeks $2.8 million.

Western Surety Co. of Chicago holds the largest unsecured claim against LEI, of $4.05 million, and is suing for $4 million.

The Kuncls filed for personal bankruptcy July 29, also under Chapter 7, claiming their liabilities of $12.21 million were mostly business-related debts. They listed assets of $768,651.