Have you recently found yourself in the difficult position of needing financial help yet have little or no ready access to cash? Have you suffered unforeseen emergencies, lost your job, or are behind on your mortgage? Whether you are in the midst of seriously hard times, or just want to upgrade your car, pay off your credit card bills, or send your child to college, your structured settlement could offer the relief you need. Structured settlements are payments you receive, usually monthly, as compensation for damages caused to you in the form of injury, crimes, or perhaps hazards at work. These settlements are, in essence, a deferred method of financial payment, agreed upon by both parties, and can be very beneficial in terms of a solid and predictable monthly income.
If the day has come, however, when the amount stipulated in your monthly payout is just not enough to cover your financial needs, it could be time to consider selling your structured settlement. If you are at this crossroads, there are certain crucial issues you need to consider before selling your structured settlement.
Where Do I Begin?
Although it was not always so, the sale of your structured settlement now requires a court in your state to review the agreement you eventually reach with a buyer, and prepare an order approving the sale; these rules are intended to protect you from being deceived or entering into a deal which is not in your best financial interest. Once you have decided to sell your structured settlement, you must do your research. Although there are many reputable companies out there, there are also some that are less than reliable. It is a good idea to call the attorney general or consumer affairs in your state to check out any prior complaints against the company you are considering. Take the time to thoroughly check out companies who purchase structured settlements, and remember that the highest bidder will not always be the best. Some companies will make a high offer in order to get you to sign a contract—later the “hidden” costs and fees come to light, leaving you with much less than you anticipated. The specific terms and conditions in purchasing structured settlement can vary widely from company to company therefore you should read the fine print thoroughly and ask questions if anything seems doubtful.
Navigating the Process
Once you have obtained multiple quotes, and have narrowed down your choices to the one you believe will can best help you, it’s time to send in copies of your structured settlement policy to the purchasing company. Once received and approved, the company will send you a disclosure document to sign which should thoroughly explain the conditions of your transaction, including offer, terms, and any other pertinent information. Once you sign the settlement agreement, the court order process will begin; be aware this process can take up to 90 days, depending on your state of residence and your insurance company. In most cases, once approved, you can receive your money fairly quickly, sometimes as soon as ten days to two weeks. Although you may need cash desperately at this moment, keep in mind that selling your structured settlement is a major financial decision that has potential consequences which will last for a very long time. Be smart, and be don’t rush into anything when negotiating a sale--the results will reflect that care.