Understand the Basic Process
While the exact method of settlement funding can vary from case to case, jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and even change based upon the parties involved, the basics are relatively simple. It all starts when the judge makes the award and determines that the damages should be paid out with a structured settlement. From there the judge will likely set terms under which the defendant must fund an annuity in the name of the plaintiff. This judgment can include restricting the time that the annuity must be funded within. You should talk to your lawyer prior to this point and ask him if his recommendations to the judge can include some time frame for this decision within his judgment.
Once the order for a structured settlement is made, the defendant and his lawyer will find an annuity company to work with. This is where it is best if the judge ordered this to be done within a set period of time, because as you can imagine the defendant could really drag their feet and stretch this out. Likely, you can count on them to take up the full amount of time that the judge allows them. This will probably take anywhere from four to twelve weeks, but it could go much longer. Of course, if the defendant appeals the judge’s original decision, this can take years.
Settlement Funding in the Hands of the Annuity Company
After the defendant chooses an annuity company they will have a lot of paperwork to fill out, and then they have to actually fund the annuity account with the amount of money ordered by the judge. This can take time depending upon the internal processes of the annuity provider. By the time they mail you your first check it could now be a number of months since your original award by the judge.
Accessing Your Lump Sum
Now if you decide that your settlement funding plan is not working out for you, that is you want a large lump sum of money instead of the smaller monthly payments, you can call an annuity settlement company who can purchase your annuity payments in exchange for a single, large payment. In this way you can cash in your entire settlement funding amount, or just a portion of it – whatever suits your financial needs at the time.
You can work with a settlement funding company, like. Here, we do all the footwork, including handling legal issues and paperwork; all you do is answer a few simple questions and sign some papers when the time comes. And, of course, you must decide how best to use that lump sum of cash that we can deliver to your door or bank account in four to six weeks.
So call Strategic Capital now. We are happy to answer all your settlement funding questions, even if you are not quite sure what decision to make yet.