Selling your belongings doesn’t usually require legal assistance, but the situation becomes a bit different when you’re talking about selling annuities. Do you need a lawyer to sell annuity payments? The answer here is a bit ambiguous. What should you know about the process and the need for expert legal help? Below, you’ll learn a bit more about the situation.
Maybe, But Maybe Not
First, understand that there are only eight states in the nation where “independent professional advice” is required for those selling annuity payments. Those states are Ohio, North Carolina, Alaska, Louisiana, Delaware, Minnesota, Maine and Maryland. The types of advice that you’ll need include tax, legal and financial, and a professional in any of those areas can help. While only those eight states require it, all other states heavily recommend it.
It’s a Definitely a Good Idea to Sell Annuity Payments
While only the aforementioned states require that you have advice from a professional, it’s really a good idea to speak with an attorney or at least your financial planner before you decide to sell annuity payments. A financial planner can help you ensure that you’re making the right decision for your financial future, and a lawyer can help you learn whether or not your annuity can actually be sold (there are many instances in which sale of annuity payments is prohibited, including an inherited annuity or one where sale is prohibited by a trust). Therefore, while it might not be a legal requirement for you, it’s always a good idea to have access to expert counsel from an attorney.
Using the Transfer Company’s Attorney
You might be tempted to use the advice of the attorney working on behalf of the transfer company when you decide to sell annuity payments. After all, you’re both working toward the same end, right? Wrong – if you’re going to get legal counsel, get your own attorney. The attorney working for the transfer company has their best interests in mind, which don’t necessarily coincide with your own. Retain your own lawyer and get independent, unbiased counsel from a legal professional.
If You’re Going to Court
If your sale requires that your transfer go before a judge, you will most certainly want an attorney on your side to help you understand what’s going on and how to ensure that your transfer has the best chance of being approved.