My husband received a bonus and we need a new roof and gutters on our home. Do we need to report the $15,000 to the trustee or turn the money over? Can we use the money for necessary repairs and expenses?
You absolutely need to report this to your attorney(s). They may be able to negotiate with the trustee for use of the funds for necessary repairs, but you will need evidence of the repairs and expenses in the form of bills, estimates and if possible a letter stating the necessity of these repairs. If you don't have an attorney, gather the documents and then contact the trustee's attorney for the case and discuss it with him/her.
Be wary, failure to disclose the receipt of these funds can lead to the dismissal of your case and/or the denial of your discharge, so you do not want to do anything questionable like depositing the bonus into another person's account or "forgetting" to disclose it.
All income must be disclosed to the Chapter 13 trustee and court. A bonus generally would have to be paid into the plan as disposable income. If you have expenses that are unexpected and need to be paid talk with your attorney or the trustees attorney regarding the issue. The judge and trustee will have a say on this issue. Disclosure is the key here and you can risk objection to your discharge or a dismissal of the case by not disclosing the income.
The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Illinois. Responses are answers to general legal questions and the receiver of such question should consult a local attorney for specific answers to questions.
His income would not necessarily be an issue in your bankruptcy. If you filed jointly, the other attorney comments are correct. But if it just your bankruptcy, you should discuss it with your attorney and see what the custom/expectation is in your district.
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