My husband and I recently filed a chapter 13 on June 25,'07. We attended our meeting of creditors and our confirmation court date was yesterday. We also have received an approval from the trustee for the court to confirm our plan and our payments are all up to date. But, now we are in a bind and need some advice. 3 days before we filed my 11 year old son was attacked by a neighbors dog and ended up in the emergency room for treatment of several bites. The neighbors homeowners insurance company offered my son a personal injury settlement of $5000 plus reimbursement of medical costs which totalled another $1650. As his guardians we agreed to the settlement offer. However, when they sent his check, they made it out to my husband and I "on behalf of our minor son" in the amount of $6650. This was due to the fact that they stated they could not make the check out to him because he is a minor. We have tried for 2 weeks to get an answer from the court trustee and our attorney and nobody will help us. They keep telling us they don't know yet whether we can give our son this money without the trustee trying to take it or getting our bankruptcy dismissed and ending up losing our home.
My son deserves to have this money for what he went through. We are not the type of people to take this from our own child. The money is going into an account for him to use in a few years for a car, college, or whatever he needs it for.
Can anyone out there please tell me if we cash this check, can the trustee legally take this money from our child? Can they dismiss our chapter 13 causing us to lose our home because somebody else was too careless in keeping their dog confined and my son got injured because of it? Please help if you can. Any advice is much appreciated.