NEW YORK (AP) - Toys 'R' Us has filed for bankruptcy protection ahead of the key holiday shopping season, but it says its stores will remain open for business as usual.
  
The toy retailer, which has been struggling with $5 billion in debt and intense online competition, says the bankruptcy proceedings are a way for Toys 'R' Us to work with its creditors on restructuring the debt beleaguering it.
  
The move comes as retailers head into the busiest shopping time of year. The company says it's "well-stocked as we prepare for the holiday season and are excited about all of our upcoming in-store events."

Toys R Us joins a growing list of companies struggling to navigate a retail landscape altered by technology and changing consumer tastes. There is even a new term that has emerged which points to the dire state of the industry: Chapter 22. Those are companies that have been forced to seek bankruptcy protection for a second time. Overall, 35 retailers have filed for bankruptcy so far this year, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence.
  
Following are some of the retailers that have sought bankruptcy protection just this year:
  
1.The Limited
  
2.Wet Seal *
  
3.Eastern Outfitters
  
4.BCBG Max Azria
  
5.Vanity
  
6.Hhgregg
  
7.RadioShack *
  
8.Gordmans
  
9.Gander Mountain
  
10.Payless ShoeSource *
  
11.Rue21 *
  
12.Gymboree
  
13.Cornerstone Apparel, owner of Papaya Clothing
  
14.True Religion Apparel
  
15.Alfred Angelo
  
16.Perfumania
  
17.Vitamin World
  
18.Aerosoles
  
19.Toys R Us
  
* Second bankruptcy protection filing by Wet Seal and RadioShack. Payless ShoeSource emerged from bankruptcy protection in August, while Rue21 received court approval to emerge from bankruptcy last week.