Injury Structured Settlement
Prior to 1982, a personal injury structured settlement was uncommon, underutilized, and often thought of as a way for unscrupulous people to bilk the unsuspecting out of millions. The damages in a personal injury lawsuit would usually be awarded in one lump sum. For the most part, the average person does not deal with large amounts of money on a regular basis; leaving them vulnerable to being taken advantage of. Perhaps the injured party would be fortunate enough to have a friend or relative capable of assisting in financial matters of this magnitude. However, in many cases there is not a trustworthy person with the right skills in an individual's lfe. So, perhaps a stranger is the answer. Although intimidating, that may be the safest thing to do. Wise financial counsel can help a person figure out what they should and should not do in order to keep the lion's share of the money and benefit from it. "Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety." (Proverbs 11:14) Large sums of money can make our lives more convenient and less stressful or more careless and destructive. In the case of a lump sum settlement, the money must be budgeted, invested, and spent wisely. The concept of a personal injury structured settlement is one way to help people who face this situation.
If, in fact, a person is not accustomed to dealing with large amounts of money at one time, there is sufficient evidence to indicate that they will have a hard time with it. A large one time payment frequently causes quite a bit of stress to a person not accustomed to managing large sums of money. Time after time, people decry, "I can't believe they're broke already. If I got that kind of money, I would know exactly what to do with it." Though generously pontificated, it's not likely to bear out in reality. More often than not, visions of expensive cars, mansions, and never-ending parties flood the minds of awardees. After being awarded, the injured person is likely to spend the settlement money on the things they had been dreaming of having one day. Many, if not most, winners of millions of dollars spend it quickly and often end up in debt; before its all said and done. The same is true for the damages awarded in a personal injury claim; making the concept of a personal injury structured settlement even more compelling.
In a sweeping move to help people out who were stuck in this predicament, the Periodic Payment Settlement Act of 1982 was passed. This legislation made the personal injury structured settlement a common practice in lawsuit damage awards. Its purpose was to amend the U.S. tax code in support of the use of structured settlements as a payment option for personal injury claims. This legislation came about as a result of the fact that a majority of people being handed large lump sums, would meet poverty soon after the award. In injury cases, awardees are given money intended for long-term treatments, future surgeries, and equipment replacements. When the money was given in a lump sum, a great number of people were not able to properly budget and allocate the necessary funds in the areas needed; leaving them unable to care for themselves. Because of this legislation, it is now possible to negotiate an injury structured settlement payment plan as a more suitable recourse than a lump sum payout so that the injured party's long-term needs are taken care of. Also called, annuity plans, they are especially well suited for circumstances where incapacity may exist and/or long-term care will be required; or when a parent of a minor child is the injured party, leaving inadequate financial support, otherwise.
How these annuity plans work is that they begin by uncovering the extent of the injury and calculating the present day sum of how much money the responsible party must use to fund an annuity. The annuity is simply a contract between the responsible party and an insurance company. The responsible party makes a lump-sum payment or series of payments to the insurer. The insurance company agrees to make periodic payments to the injured party. The annuity will take care of the damages awarded the injured party for the term set within the agreement. That term could be one year or perhaps the individual's entire life. Used to fund a personal injury structured settlement, the annuity plan is an good way to protect a person's financial security for future. Once a good plan is in place, medical expenses are taken care of through the monthly or annual annuity. This alleviates worries about care and sustenance.
In addition to the damages awarded for a specific physical injury; there may also be pain and suffering, loss of income, and loss of consortium damages awarded as part of the settlement. All damages, except for punitive damages, are tax-free at both the Federal and State levels. Even though the overall amount of money may be substantial, annuity payments come in smaller increments. This is good news if a person does not already have a financial advisor they can trust. There are companies who specialize in converting personal injury structured settlement payments into lump sum payments. Admittedly, the cash amount these companies would be willing to pay will be less than the total amount to be received over time. An awardee may actually have a specific goal to achieve with the money. If the idea of owning a business was ever part of a future plan. The future could be now. Each person has their own choice to make. Depending upon whether you actually need the money for medical expenses, a college fund for a child, or it's a windfall, each payment option has its benefits. Everyone's circumstance is different. A lump sum windfall sounds really nice; but if not prepared most people are better off taking the personal injury structured settlement.
Insurance Injury SettlementPeople who are interested in an insurance injury settlement should take a few facts into consideration. First of all, those involved in the process should be aware of whether or not there is a minimum amount of money that can be settled upon. Most of the time, the amount of money that can be settled on in an insurance claim is dependent on a variety of factors, mainly the severity of an accident and injuries sustained. Another factor that should be taken into consideration in the midst of an insurance injury settlement is the amount of damages that are sustained financially by way of medical bills resulting for the care of the injuries sustained by one or more parties involved. Most of the time there is neither a minimum or maximum amount set that can be recovered. Those who are injured should rest assured that with the proper plan, the financial details should be taken care of, allowing them the peace of mind much like "the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:70).
A question commonly asked among those who are involved in an insurance injury settlement pertains to the process of collection on an award for personal injury. The answer to this question mainly lies with whether or not the person responsible for the accident has sufficient coverage. If there is knowledge that the person does indeed have the proper coverage, then the steps towards collection are relatively straightforward. All that is required is for the proper companies to be contacted and a check is written up for the required amount. The problem comes win the responsible party does not have insurance, then the lawyers and the court systems are required to enter the picture.
Most of the time, people will have to seek the assistance of a personal injury attorney when faced with the prospect of dealing with an insurance injury settlement. Attorneys are specifically trained in the field and can be trusted on to have expert advice and a working knowledge of the systems and proceedings involved. An attorney should work closely with a client in order to ensure that the case follows the facts and that their client receives what is due them. As a client, a person should be aware of the rights that are entitled to them in order to have the ability to be aware of basic proceedings. Another fact to keep in mind is that it is within the rights of a client to inquire into receiving a personal copy of the actual settlement check. A person can and should ask their attorney about the matter, especially as the check requires the endorsement of the person they are working for.
Every case has different details and factors surrounding the specific. Occasionally events are unique to the specific people an incidents involved. No matter the details surrounding an insurance injury settlement, attorneys should be able to assist clients and come to an agreement that is satisfactory. Personal injury attorneys do have some room for independence. A lawyer does have the ability to come to a settlement without the consent of a client, however such a move is not recommended unless the client has had no say in the case at all. An attorney is not usually paid until the point when the case has been settled.
Dealings with insurance can become confusing, and those who do not have the required skills or experience should look for assistance from experts in the field. Before an insurance injury settlement can be completed, those involved must be apprised of the situation and have taken the steps towards ensuring that their needs are met. From time to time, depending on the situations surrounding a case, people can gain other benefits along the way. For example, any and all costs that may result from health care can be repaid from the profits gained in a settlement. Those who perhaps are confused concerning what actions are acceptable and those which can be expected should look to expert assistance.
Hundreds of financial institutions have been established for the express purpose of assisting individuals with the details surrounding an accident and all the paperwork and financial details that follow. Those who have suffered from wrongful injuries resulting from an accident might perhaps have no means with which to cover health costs and subsequent bills. The money obtained from an insurance injury settlement can go a very long way towards providing the coverage that is necessary for people to get on with their normal lives. In order to get back to life as quickly as possible, people should be aware of the steps that are required to be taken as soon as an accident is cleaned up. Those who are aware of the actions that should take place immediately following an accident can ensure that the most can be gained out of a settlement that is possible.
The world of insurance dealings can be a very confusing, however, necessary part of life. The process is required in order for people to be provided with ways in which to financially afford unexpected situations or injuries that might occur. Adequate amounts of preparation should not be taken for granted. The saying that 'an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure' rings true when viewed in the light of the costs of insurance and the processes involved with an insurance injury settlement. Those who are not adequately prepared run the risk of losing more than is necessary in the event of the unforeseen.