Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York
Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York and personal lawyer for Donald Trump, has filed for bankruptcy. AFP

Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump's former personal lawyer, filed for bankruptcy on Thursday, just days after being ordered to pay $148 million in damages for defaming two Georgia poll workers.

The former mayor of New York, in a bankruptcy petition seeking protection from his creditors, listed assets of between $1 million and $10 million and liabilities of between $100 million and $500 million.

The largest of his debts is the $148 million a federal jury in Washington ordered him to pay on December 15 to Ruby Freeman and her daughter Wandrea "Shaye" Moss for repeatedly making false claims that they engaged in 2020 election fraud.

The Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition filed with a New York bankruptcy court also listed debts ranging from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars to federal and state authorities for unpaid income taxes and his former lawyers and accountants.

"Unknown" amounts were recorded as being owed to Hunter Biden, President Joe Biden's son, and the voting technology companies Dominion and Smartmatic. Hunter Biden, Dominion and Smartmatic have all filed lawsuits against Giuliani. They are ongoing.

The 79-year-old Giuliani was found liable in August by US District Judge Beryl Howell of defaming Freeman and Moss, both Fulton County poll workers, with his 2020 election lies on behalf of former president Trump.

An eight-person federal jury awarded Freeman and Moss more than $16 million each for defamation, $20 million each for emotional distress and $75 million in punitive damages.

Howell ordered Giuliani on Wednesday to begin paying them immediately.

Giuliani, who led Trump's legal efforts to overturn the results of the election, posted a video of Freeman and Moss that falsely accused them of engaging in fraud during ballot counting and made numerous other baseless claims about them.

Freeman and Moss, who are Black, told the jury during the four-day defamation trial that Giuliani's false accusations had upended their lives and made them the target of racist threats.

"The flame that Giuliani lit with those lies and passed to so many others to keep that flame blazing changed every aspect of our lives, our homes, our family, our work, our sense of safety, our mental health," Moss said.

The defamation case is just one of a number of legal challenges facing Giuliani, who has been indicted on racketeering charges in Georgia along with Trump and others for allegedly conspiring to overturn the 2020 election results in the southern state.

Giuliani was New York mayor from 1994 to 2001, guiding the city through the shock of the September 11 attacks and becoming known as "America's Mayor" -- before signing up as Trump's personal lawyer while he was in the White House.

Giuliani's license to practice law has been suspended in New York and Washington for "false and misleading statements" he made as part of his efforts to overturn the results of the election won by Biden.

Hunter Biden has filed a lawsuit against Giuliani accusing him of computer fraud for accessing personal data on his computer.

In 2020, in a bid to embarrass Biden ahead of the election, Giuliani and Trump allies circulated data from a laptop that Hunter Biden had abandoned at a computer repair shop in Delaware.