How can I make sure my ex puts a settlement away for my child and does not use it on herself

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How can I make sure my ex puts a settlement away for my child and does not use it on herself

My children were in a car accident a few months . My ex sent me a release paper so they can collect their settlement. My concern is she will spend it on herself and not put it away for the children. Is there any way to protect the money.

Asked on April 28, 2009 under Personal Injury, Pennsylvania

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

It is a normal part of any accident settlement involving minors that the funds they receive by way of a settlement be put away in a segregated interest bearing account for their benefit until they are 18, with court permission required to distribute funds prior thereto.

The problem arises when someone claims the children have needs for funds before they are 18 -- such as for medical treatment to care for the injuries sustained, or to attend private school their parents could not afford to send them to, or for a new iPod or other necessities or luxuries their parents can't afford.

One person's necessity is another person's luxury. And of course if the custodial parent feels pressure to let the kid have an iPod and can tap the kid's money for the iPod, with court permission, then she has more of her own money for herself.

You could speak to the lawyer involved so he understands your concerns and say you want an opportunity for both parents to be heard before any withdrawals are made. But be aware that in many cases I have seen, and judges have seen far more than I, the non-custodial parent is less interested in protecting the children's money than penalizing the custodial parent. Make sure your motivation is in the right place.

 


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