On August 2, Le Tote Inc. and certain subsidiaries including Lord & Taylor, filed for Chapter 11 reorganization in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. The company will simultaneously solicit bids for a going concern sale of its Le Tote and Lord & Taylor businesses, and conduct targeted store closing sales at 19 locations ― including the location at The Mall in Columbia ― to maximize the value of its business.

The company filed to facilitate and continue a marketing process for both of its business units that began this summer and to efficiently monetize any assets not sold as part of the marketing process.  Both Le Tote and Lord & Taylor will continue to operate during the chapter 11 process.

To help fund and protect its operations during Chapter 11, the company has obtained consent to use cash collateral from its prepetition secured lenders. The company has also filed a number of customary motions seeking court authorization to support its operations during chapter 11, including the continued payment of employee wages and benefits and the authority to conduct store closing sales led by a joint venture of Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers.  

The company will also close a second Lord & Taylor Maryland store at the former White Flint Mall site, in Kensington.