Selling annuities is not new – it’s been happening as long as structured payments have been around, though it has become more common in recent years. For those who find that their structured settlement doesn’t help with a crippling financial situation, finding annuity buyers is important. How do you go about doing that, though? Actually, it can be as simple as going online to find annuity purchasers, but there are a few things you should know.
Before you hit the Internet to find a buyer, it’s important to arm yourself with information. For instance, don’t believe all the hype from late night infomercials. Selling annuity requires more than just a phone call. The entire process can take more than a month, and is subject to a judge’s decision on whether the sale can move forward. Going online to find annuity purchasers should only be done after you have thoroughly researched your situation.
Another important tip for those going online to find annuity purchasers is that the process is simpler and more efficient when you have help. Don’t look for help from the purchasers themselves, though. Rather, you should work with a brokerage that can help you connect with the most reputable buyers out there. Not only does working with a brokerage ensure that you are able to start receiving offers immediately, but that you can work with some of the better buyers in the market. Going it alone means that you’ll have to rely on your own expertise, which is likely not as robust as it should be.
Selling structured settlements is nothing new, and it’s becoming increasingly common, particularly as the economy continues to struggle. While ongoing payments in a structured settlement offer stability to payees, there can be an immense need for immediate cash right now. For instance, job loss, back bills, danger of defaulting on a mortgage and other financial concerns can convenience structured payment holders that now is the time to sell. However, buyers face some risks in the process.
One of the first risks that structured settlement purchasers will face is the court process. Selling structured settlements is not a simple, expedient process. Every single sale will have to go through the court so a judge can determine if the sale is possible. One of the first risks purchasers will face is that the judge will deny the sale off the bat. It’s certainly possible, as the law leaves this to the judge’s discretion.
Payees cannot sell structured settlements for just any old reason. For instance, they can’t sell their payments if they want to go on vacation or buy a second home. They can’t sell if they want to use that money to refurbish their homes or to put their children through college. Most states have laws on the books stating that not only must the payee show proof of need that would make the sale necessary, but that the sale itself would be in the payee’s best interest (this is done to keep sales to unscrupulous buyers out of the picture).
It’s tempting to lump both annuities and structured settlements into the same category. After all, they have quite a few similarities, including regular payments over a specified period of time. However, they’re actually very different and the way federal and state laws handle these two financial products is also very different. What is the difference between an annuity and a structured settlement? Let’s take a closer look.
Structured settlements are exactly what they sound like. These are generally the result of a lawsuit involving personal injury or liability, and represent an award in the plaintiff’s favor. The defendant has been found guilty or has chosen to settle rather than go to trial. The settlement amount has been converted from a lump sum into a series of payments over time. These are called deferred payments.
The difference between an annuity and a structured settlement is that annuities are generally financial tools available through insurance companies or investment firms. Lottery winnings often fall into this category too, if the individual opted for the annuity choice rather than the lump sum payment. An annuity is an investment on which the investor earns a return in addition to the original investment amount, and can have various beneficiaries. Annuities come in a wide range of types, as well.