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Sears Chapter 11 Shoppers Q&A

Sears gift cards are displayed at a store in Hackensack, N.J., Monday, Oct. 15. Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday, buckling under its massive debt load and staggering losses.

NEW YORK — Sears, once the nation's largest retailer, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday, hurt by falling sales and its massive debt. The owner of Sears and Kmart stores says it will continue to operate through the bankruptcy.

Here's what shoppers need to know:

WILL STORES BE OPEN?

Not all of them. The company will shutter 77 Sears stores and 65 Kmart stores by the end of the year as part of the bankruptcy. That's in addition to the 46 stores it is in the process of closing by next month. The company will have more than 500 stores remaining. Sears posted a list of its closing stores online at https://searsholdings.com/docs/101518_store_closing_list.pdf .

WILL I BE ABLE TO USE MY GIFT CARD?

Yes, gift cards will continue to be accepted, the company says.

CAN I STILL RETURN OR EXCHANGE PRODUCTS?

The return policy isn't being changed for stores that will remain open. But if you buy something from a closing store, all sales are final and can't be returned unless the item is defective. Shoppers have seven days to return a defective item to the closing store.

CAN I USE MY SEARS CREDIT CARD?

Yes, the company says nothing will change about its credit cards.

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