Innkeepers USA Trust , a U.S. real estate investment trust with interests in about 73 hotels, is getting ready for a possible bankruptcy filing after missing debt payments earlier this month, according to four people familiar with the matter.

The firm, which was bought out by Apollo Investment Corp in 2007 in a $1.5 billion deal, has hired law firm Kirkland & Ellis and investment bankers Moelis & Co to advise it on restructuring, these people said.

The Palm Beach, Florida-based trust is preparing for all restructuring contingencies, including a possible bankruptcy, these people said, asking not to be named because the information is not public.

Innkeepers did not return several calls seeking comment on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Emily Chasan; Editing by Gary Hill)