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Your Guide to Structured Settlement Payments

Aug 23, 2007
If you have ever gone through an extended trial or won a lottery where you were awarded payment, you are likely familiar with the concept of structured settlement payments. A structured settlement payment simply means that rather than getting your money all at once, the debtor is required to pay what you are owed in installments rather than in one lump sum. In this way, the structured settlements can be filtered out over time, coming at regular intervals.

The way a structured settlements works is basically two parties agree upon a specific plan to pay an eventual amount in small increments over time. Over this fixed span of the elapsed time, the individual will repay a certain amount or award a sum equal to the original sum arrived at by both parties.

In a structured settlement there are likely many documents assigned to the settlement case including an annuity policy, a court order, an annuity application and a qualified assignment as well as an agreement between the parties. The payments for the considered settlement can vary from all manner of lump sums and installments depending on the agreement between the affected parties.

Both parties choose the length of time that the structured settlements will span, as well as the individual policies and regulations governing the structured plan. As structured settlements are paid out over the years, the parties are made privy to the inner workings of the arrangement, so as best to affect the repayment or initial payment of the settlement.

Structured settlement payments are tax-free by nature and cannot be counted towards overall income and are guaranteed by contracts. This contract guarantee ensures that the settlement payee will be guaranteed a settlement payment at regular intervals from the payee. It is important to understand all the issues involving settlements before you choose such a payment plan. There are many state and federal laws that cover the institution of the structured settlement payment plan that allows for the repayment and record keeping throughout the life of a settlement payment plan. Following these state and federal laws can be a difficult matter as it may require additional study and preparation to prepare for.

Before any structured settlement can take place, a disclosure statement must be made ready for the perusal of the customer ahead of time, generally at least three and as many as fourteen days before consummation. This early notice gives the customer plenty of time to decide exactly how to go about initiating the structured settlement payment plan. Users are advised to locate and retain an attorney before attempting to structure a settlement plan.
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