How to Sell a Structured Settlement

10-Mar-2014

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Image Source: American Mortgage

Selling a structured settlement is fairly straightforward, and if the process is done the right way, you can have your money in as little as a few weeks. If you’re thinking about selling a structured settlement, here’s how the average process works:

1. Making the Decision

First of all, you’re going to have to take action and decide why you want to sell. Do you want to go back to college? Do you want to buy a new house? Remember that if you’re serious about this, most states will require you to see a judge to approve the transaction, so if you’re going to sell just because “you want to,” then there’s a good chance your transfer won’t be approved.

Good reasons to sell include:

  • – Buying a new home
  • – College education
  • – Starting a new business
  • – Paying off a large amount of debt
  • – Divorce
  • – Investing in stocks, bonds or mutual funds

 

2. Get Multiple Quotes

Getting multiple quotes is probably the most important part of selling a structured settlement. While you don’t want to go with the first quote you receive, you’re going to want to make sure that you’re getting at least three to five quotes from a reputable company. Most of these quotes can be obtained through a form on their website or through a simple phone call.

When receiving a quote, make sure that you research the company’s background, how the process works and how they guarantee the payments. Any reputable settlement company will make sure they give you a closing date and an exact estimate on how much they can pay you for your settlement. When researching these companies, a great place to start is either by checking with the Better Business Bureau or searching the company’s name online to see what others are saying.

3. Start the Process

The amount you receive will depend on the amount of payments you’re going to receive in the future, the current economic conditions and how you want to receive your settlement.

When selling your settlement, you can cash out in three popular ways:

Partial

This is when you will sell parts of your settlement while continuing to receive settlement checks in the future. This payment method will still carry tax benefits and will extend to your heirs in case you die before collecting the all of your payments.

Lump Sum

A lump sum will give you money now in larger increments, but like the partial payments, you will still continue to receive monthly payments in the future.

Entirety

Selling your structured settlement in its entirety will mean you will empty your entire investment at once. When you receive your payment, you will no longer receive anymore monthly paychecks in the future.

Ultimately, each type will affect the amount the company is going to be able to quote. When receiving your quotes, remember that the companies are often going to offer you a lot less than what the settlement is worth because in the end, they are in a business to make hefty profits.

4. Talk with a Lawyer

While this step is optional, many people who sell their structured settlements often work with a lawyer who specializes in this industry. A lawyer will be able to go over your agreement, tell you if you’re getting a good deal and even explain the tax consequences.

5. Accept the Offer

Once you accept the offer, the company will send you some paperwork that you will have to complete. On average, it can take up to 60 days to receive your money. The time will depend on the state’s laws and regulations.

6. Court

If you’re one of the 40 states that passed legislation that regulates structured settlement payments, you will have to set up a court case to have a judge overlook the case. During this case, the judge will look over any paperwork and will ask you why you’re looking to sell. If the judge feels you have a good reason to sell, then there’s a good chance they will approve the transfer.

7. Get the Money

Once the transaction is completed and approved by the court, the company will set up a closing date to transfer the money to your bank account or write you a check. Once the money is in your possession, the process will be over.

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