News and Tips on structured settlement transfers.



Jun 11

Structured Settlement Sales: Dodge the Rip Off

Getting lump sum cash for your structured settlement shouldn’t be that difficult as there are many finance companies that profitably thrive from these transactions.  But the challenge a seller faces is knowing if what he’s getting is the right price.  There are no hard and fast rules as every structured settlement transaction is unique and no two are the same to make a good comparison.  But there are situations that raise a red flag for sellers to watch out. Here are some of them.

Step 1:  When shopping for a buyer or company who can provide cash value for your structured settlement, consider it as interviewing for an applicant to your household staff.  Remember that these people will make money from your future cash flows and offers could come between 8% and 18% less than the total value of your future cash flows discounted to their present value.  So be selective and trust your gut feel as if you are evaluating applicants to be your kid’s nanny.  If you’re not comfortable with the prospective buyer, chances are your instinct could be right.  Next please.

Step 2:  Where the settlement is a legal matter, you may need to get the relevant judge to approve the cash offer.  If the judge disapproves it, the buyer has the responsibility to offer another proposal.  Raise the red flag if the buyer is charging a service fee to give a new proposal.  Chances are the company is bogus.

Step 3:  It could be rare but if there’s an individual private investor offering cash for your structured settlement, run from him like the plague.  Making money out of your future cash flows is often possible only with large volumes of monthly cash flows aggregated from various other structured settlements which only companies can do.  This makes any offer from a single person quite spurious.

Step 4:  Be wary of investors suggesting ways to skip the legal aspect of approving the deal.  This is not only illegal, but you are opening the opportunity to get scammed.  If you’re making the decision without the benefit of legal or financial counsel, know that the only one standing between you and a scam is the judge.

In times like this, your best weapon against possible rip-offs is to not to rush to any decision without evaluating your other options.  A quick Google search will reveal hundreds of structure settlement companies.  Take your time in digging up facts of the companies you contact.  A through research is often the key to playing it safe.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Structured Settlement Sales: Hunting For Your Buyer

Most people are not prepared for financial emergencies that suddenly pop up in their lives.  If you are someone who has been enjoying structured settlement payments, you are fortunate because you can use this to bail yourself out in such emergencies. That is, if you are wise enough to locate a company who will buy the rights for your structured settlement. And, if you are wise enough to find the “right” buyer for your structured settlement payments. If you are interested in selling your settlement, follow these steps when on the hunt for the right buyer.

Step 1: Find out if you can sell your structured settlement payments:

It is only reasonable for the potential buyer to examine your structured settlement to determine whether he can exercise the right to collect the payments. Therefore, find out if you can transfer the rights to him. In most states this is a non-issue, however why waste your time if the sale isn’t a possibility for you? The company will compute its present value to see if he can make a profit from the payments should he be given the rights to receive them. Some companies are looking for more profit than others, so shop around.

Step 2: Don’t look for a buyer in just one place.

The quickest way to search for potential buyers is by using the internet. Look for the companies that offer the best deal in terms of rates and options. There may be local buyers near you so don’t overlook them. Also consider that a small buyer may sometimes give you a better deal because of their low overhead cost. Lawyers and Insurance brokers can also be of help in locating a reputable buyer.

Step 3: Get more than a single offer.

You cannot get the best offer if you only consider one buyer. And, considering that with only slightly more effort you could have a dozen different offers to look at- why not? With two or more buyers, you can get an idea of the real prevailing price. It is not only the price either. Their rates may vary because of the options that they offer. By considering all these factors, you can get the best amount for the options that you want to get.

Step 4: Play Private Investigator.

Get a list of the past and present clients of the buyer that you have chosen. Check with these clients about their experience with this buyer. Ask if the buyer was able to fulfill his promises to the clients and the quality of service they were given. Use this buyer’s history as your gauge if you will finalize the deal.

There are still other legal matters to consider with regards to selling structured settlement rights. But by following these steps, you will be able to find the right company to sell this settlement to. After this, it will be a matter of going to the legality of the sales.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Getting the Best Deal on Selling Your Structured Settlement

When you win a civil lawsuit, the damage settlement often comes in the form of periodic cash inflow called a structured settlement. You can also get one from a lottery win or an insurance payout.  These payments are almost always secured or guaranteed cash flows.  But some people prefer to get a lump sum cash payout and would sell the structured settlement for a discounted cash value today.   Just like securing a mortgage, selling a structured settlement is a financial transaction best left to professionals in the business.  Unless you have the skill yourself, it can be a good idea to tap into the right people to get the best structured settlement deal.  But not all have your interest in mind.  It is best to consider the following.

Step 1:  Ask your lawyer and colleagues for their input if they had dealt with structured settlement companies before and get some recommendation.  It is important to establish their legitimacy and reputation before signing on the dotted line.

Step 2:  Shop around and the best place is the internet.  Be sure that the structured settlement company has a local address and contact you can verify by calling and is registered with the Better Business Bureau.  This is often indicated by a triple B logo on its site.  In addition, companies with at least 5 years in the business often tell you they have established a reputation they need to protect.

Step 3:  Get quotes from these companies and shortlist only those that can provide the best price without the need to haggle with them. There is no obligation to accept a quote.  As a pricing guide, depending on future payment streams, typical discount rates for a structured settlement transaction to convert future cash streams into a lump sum today are usually between 8% and 15%.  Most companies have a structured settlement calculator that helps you determine the equivalent cash value of future cash inflows in your structured settlement.

Step 4:  Look for online settlement quoting companies that have a network of funders or financiers who can competitively bid for the value of your structured settlement. Bear in mind that these funders earn money by re-investing your structured settlement at the highest yields while giving the lowest possible cash value for your expected cash inflows.  It shouldn’t be difficult to spot the highest bid.

You should never accept an offer if you’re not sure.  But if the Disclosure Statement or Assignment Agreement contains a Cooling Off period, you can still change your mind and cancel the transaction in case a better one crops up.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Selling Your Structured Settlement: Avoid the Scammers

In some cases, you simply cannot wait for the full payment so you decide to sell your structured settlement to a structured settlement company. This transaction presents favorable gains for a structured settlement company in the form of profit. If a structured settlement company offers a lump sum that is too good to be true, think twice for it might be one of the scam companies operating in your locality. Watch out for these scams to avoid losses on your part.

Signs of a Structured Settlement Company Worth Your Trust:

One characteristic of a good structured settlement company is stability. Stability is usually measured by the number of years the company has been in the business of buying structured settlements. Another characteristic is dependability. It is best to find a company who is willing to assist you and give you financial advice from the time you are about to accept a structured settlement until the time when you are ready to sell your structured settlement to them. Credibility is yet another important characteristic of a good structured settlement company. A determinant of a company’s credibility would be the number of satisfied clients they have. If they give you a lot of their past clients as references, then, most likely, you’ve found a credible company. Lastly, a good company puts customers’ needs first before business. If you think a structured settlement company does not give you a fair amount for your structured settlement, find a different company who will consider your needs.

Structured Settlements: The Laws on Selling and Buying

When structured settlements became popular, so did the concept of buying and selling structured settlements. When you decide to sell your structured settlement, the lump sum you would get from a structured settlement company will naturally be significantly lower than the total amount of your structured settlement. Selling it is tantamount to giving the company the rights to receive your future payments stated in the settlement agreement. Many states have enacted laws regulating the buying and selling of structured settlements. As a matter of fact, only four American states do not have structured settlement acts, namely, North Dakota, Vermont, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. These structured settlement protection acts would serve as your protection should you decide to sell your structured settlement for quick cash. Prior to selling structured settlement to a company, the law provides that a detailed accounting of all the fees, charges, and expenses associated with the selling be made available to the structured settlement owner. Conditions surrounding breach of contract should also be discussed to the owner in accordance with the law. Transferring the rights to the structured settlement company is also governed by law as a judicial court is tasked to always mediate the transfer proceedings to ensure that the structured settlement owner is fully aware of the pros and cons of the transfer before approving the transfer.

How to Check if the Company You Have Picked is a SCAMMER:

If the company you are considering does not possess the characteristics earlier mentioned, then most probably it is a scam. If, despite the absence of these characteristics, you are still unsure whether the company you’ve chosen is a scam, consult the authorities. You could make inquiries, either personally or via phone call, to the Better Business Bureau or the National Structured Settlements Trade Association (NSSTA).

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Questions and Dangers for Selling Your Structured Settlement

A structured settlement might have seemed like a good idea when you were granted your settlement for an injury or another payout. Now you’re thinking it may not have been such a wise decision. The cash comes in consistently but now you have more need for the cash to make some other investment. You may be able to sell your structured settlement and obtain the cash you need right now. What

Are The Restrictions When Selling a Structured Settlement?

Structured settlements are normally established to protect you not to restrict you. The settlements generally are considered in instances where injuries will likely call for long term care. For this reason, many states have restricted the power to sell your structured settlement for a one time lump payment. The federal government might even get involved to put a stop to the transaction in some cases. The federal regulations will normally enter into effect if the settlement is tax-free. If you break the original arrangement of the settlement it might now be categorized as taxable income instead of tax-free income.

Should You Sell Your Structured Settlement Even With These Constraints?

First, think about a very serious question. Is this really your only choice? If you can work around selling the settlement you will come out ahead financially. Second, visit with either an investment expert or financial attorney to know if your state restricts the sale of structured settlements. There is no reason to continue chasing after a buyer if you will be unable to make the sale anyway.

Could There Be Any Danger in Selling Your Settlement?

Some things you need to look out for are: Who will pay for the cost of the transaction? It might involve an attorney cutting into your payment substantially. What percentage of loss will you take? Yes, you’ll take a significant loss on the total worth of your settlement. You will need to obtain numerous bids as a way to lower the expense of the transaction and to get the highest payout when you sell your structured settlement. Let everyone know that you’re taking bids. All the companies and investors must be aware that you are taking multiple offers. This will increase the percentage of payout. Once you have received all of your offers take a moment and read them thoroughly. Watch closely for any exceptions or any areas which generate questions. Do not leave any queries you have unanswered. You have to know the details of each offer or you enhance your risk of loss.

Is The Highest Payout Always The Best Option?

While it may seem to be smart to select the offer with the highest payout, be sure you check who is paying the cost of the transaction. This might affect the bottom line quickly. Furthermore, keep in mind the financial stability of each company and their payment terms. Select the best offer based upon confidence and the amount of the payout. You will be better off consulting an attorney or a CPA before you complete the deal to sell your structured settlement. They will be qualified to establish potential risks and show you how to avoid paying excessive taxes. Keep your eyes wide open along the way and acquire all the details all the way.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Structured Settlement Sales: Getting the Most From Your Money

Within the structured settlement sales industry, every company is not alike. If you are in need of a large lump sum of cash as soon as possible and have exhausted all other options, getting a lump sum of money in exchange for your future structured settlement payment rights may be the option for you. . Here are a few tips to help you get the most money out of your structured settlement sale:

1) Research Companies

* Check the company’s Better Business Bureau record. Ask yourself- Is the number of complaints reasonable? Do any complaints raise red flags that this company may be operating in an unethical fashion? Make decisions whether the company uses ethical business practices before you consider going any further with that company.
* Do a Google search on the company. Do you see any complaints? Have the ever gone through any bankruptcies?
* Get the opinion of outside sources and provide the sources with the information you have uncovered. Sometimes a different opinion can be a better opinion, or at the least, may provide you with a different point of view.

2) Get Several Quotes

* Don’t jump at the first offer you receive. Many times companies will lowball a quote to make more profit. After all, these companies are in business to make money and it’s YOUR job to make sure you get the best deal.
* Don’t disclose the quote amounts that you have received from the other companies or the names of the companies you have received quotes from. Use open ended questions to help you find out if the company is going to try and take advantage of you or if they are going to provide a great quote from the start. You will know who is looking out for your best interest once you use this tactic.

3) Closing Date Guarantee

In order to secure more transactions and higher profits, companies will use tactics such as “interest drag” to delay the closing on your structured settlement factoring transaction. Interest drag is the process of prolonging a structured settlement sale transaction to earn interest off the delayed time before the transaction is funded. Sometimes this can lead to thousands of dollars lost on your end.

* Get a guarantee that the closing will be within a reasonable time period. In most states an 8 week guarantee is usually sufficient.
* In the guarantee, demand that any delays will award the a per day amount be paid to you upon closing. This way you will know the company is not profiting by delaying you case.

By using these three tips, you can be sure you will receive the most money for your structured settlement.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Structured Settlement Sales: Hunting for the Right Buyer

As you may know from TV commercials, financial news, and from millions for ads on the internet. Sure, lots of buyers will respond to you. But beware: some buyers will make promises they realistically can’t fulfill when they try to tempt you to work with them.

What seemed like an ideal amount at the time of your structured settlement may no longer seem as beneficial now. Whether or medical expenses, a child’s college education, or to settle high interest credit card debt, more and more people are choosing to sell their structured settlement payments now than ever before. Here are a few things to consider before selling to make sure you’re on the right track.

1. Don’t fall for the smoke and mirrors.

Slick buyers will try to impress you with all sorts of “facts”-which may or may not be relevant to your situation. They may tell you great things they’ve done for their great customers, the size of their business, and annual revenues. This is all well and good, but these statistics don’t guarantee the buyer will treat you fairly and find the best solution for both your short-term and long-term goals. So how do you know if a potential buyer delivers on what they say, or are they just blowing smoke?

When the buyer talks, consider whether he or she has:

* Listened to your current and future cash needs.
* Gathered a firm idea of why you are selling structured settlements.
* Offered suggestions to help you reach your current needs without selling
your settlement.

When the buyer listens, consider whether he or she has:

* Actively listened to you explain your problems before giving you any answers.
* Focused intently on you as if you were the center of the universe.

2. Only sell what you need and not a penny more. Of course you want to sell your structured settlement because you need cash and you need it now. Right? Maybe not. Before you sell, ask yourself why are you really selling?

Just because you need money now doesn’t mean you have to sell your entire settlement or annuity. Maybe you need to:

* Buy a house or save one from foreclosure.
* Consolidate credit card debt.
* Finance education.
* Pay an immediate medical expense.

If you don’t have solid reasons to sell structured settlement payments, proceed with caution. A good buyer will tell you this and will offer options that meet your current need for cash, but also provide long-term security. There is no good reason to sell your entire annuity if you only need a portion of it for your immediate needs.

3. Ask questions

There are some things you should know before you sign a contract. Here’s one: ask your buyer what he or she doesn’t do well. A good buyer understands that limitations create focus and focus creates value. Admitting mistakes is a good sign of honesty, integrity, and intelligence. Here’s something else you should know: are there any alternatives to just selling your settlement outright? A good buyer will give you options-and alternatives may mean more money for you. Bottom line: the only stupid questions are the ones you don’t ask.

4. Know the danger signs

Beware of a buyer who:

* Calls you three or more times a day
* Has you speak with someone different each time you call their office
* Doesn’t argue with you ( in a positive way )
* Doesn’t return your calls
* Makes promises about when you will get your money
* Says: “don’t worry about it” or “trust us, we do this all the time”
* Knows less about structured settlements and annuities than you
* Sends you all the paperwork at once

Selling your structured settlement payments doesn’t happen overnight.  So watch out for companies that claim: “we can put cash in your pocket in a few days.” Don’t believe it. Find out how long you will realistically have to wait for your money before you sell. If it sounds too good to be true: it is. Luckily, there are many companies to chose from. So find the one that fits your needs- not theirs.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Selling Your Structured Settlement: Don’t Panic!!!

If you have been receiving payments from a structured settlement, you may have noticed that these regular payments, at times, do not cover all your expenses. This is especially the case if the victim experiences a secondary complication related to the original injury. This potentially very serious complication could be directly related to the original accident that required legal action in the first place. However, since the lawsuit is over and the settlement amount agreed upon, now you will be forced to make some extremely important financial decisions.

Unfortunately, financial emergencies have a strong tendency to send most individuals into an immediate and extreme mental panic. In this heightened state of anxiety many individuals make very quick and often uninformed financial decisions. This is financially dangerous because, frequently, choices made in this “What-am-I-going-to-do-now?!?!” mental state end up being one of those moments you look back on and think “what was I thinking?!”

Another common problem with making decisions when in a stressful “I need money now”  mental state is that many dishonest and self interested entities actually attempt to target those with that precise confusion condition for their own benefit. Scams often use this “trick” to create urgency in the consumer and increase the potential that each particular customer will release their financial information, ultimately leaving themselves wide open to many potentially devastating scam operations.

Simply verifying the credibility of any company, especially those with only an online presence, will be sufficient effort to protect you from majority of the scams present on the web. However, in this “I need my money now” mental state you are also opening yourself up to taking the first bid you can find from a reputable buyer. Reputable alone does not mean they have the best rate.

Approximately 50% of  those who have made the decision to sell their structured settlements, have said after the sale that they feel they could have obtained more money by simply comparing structured settlement offers from different funding providers. Your goal when trading in your structured settlement account for a lump sum of money is to get the highest offer. So, it’s time to shop around.

The most successful way to locate the highest offer for your structured settlement is to put some time into researching and contacting multiple funding companies and simply comparing the quotes. This can certainly prove to be a painstaking, tedious, and frustrating process. However, in the end, considering the sale process can take 45 – 90 days before you are approved anyway- why not spend a week or two doing your homework?

Unfortunately, lawsuit funding companies vary widely in levels of professionalism, honesty, and keeping the victims’ best interests at heart. It is highly recommended that you research each litigation funding provider you are considering working with before signing any legal binding contracts or providing any sensitive personal information. It would certainly be considered beneficial to choose a lawsuit funding provider that you feel confident trusting.

And, for our final tidbit of advice today, remember you can always slam the brakes on any deal you may be working on if you feel uncomfortable. Don’t put up with pressure. It doesn’t matter if you’ve spent 100 hours on the phone with the provider representative.. If you want out, get out before you sign and find another provider.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Structured Settlements: To Sell or Not to Sell, That is the Question

When talking about selling structured settlements it can be a confusing and complex topic. Especially when so many companies are not accurately communicating information. The concept itself is simple, but the choices and legal process surrounding the sale can seem so complicated that your left with your head spinning. So when you have a structured settlement do you sell or not sell? That is the question (for today).

Some times the tax properties of a structured settlement are enough reason to not sell all on their own. All such payments are completely exempt from state and federal income taxation, while if you sell for a lump sum you’ll be paying Uncle Sam. Knowing you’ll receive an income at regular intervals for often a large length of time completely tax free sounds like a rather good reason to hold off on selling.

Then again, one of the most misunderstood concepts of those with settlements to sell is the idea of “present value of future money”. I have previously gone into detail on this concept, so I’ll just offer a brief summary here. A dollar today is, most likely, not going to be worth as much as a dollar will be five years from now. And when you are talking about set settlement payments lasting a decade or longer that value becomes even less. So then it does make sense to get the higher value from your settlement now even if it will cost you a portion right?

But then again, we’ve all heard stories about people who “hit the jackpot” with a single big payment, only to end up losing it due to mismanagement. The finance world calls it dissipating those funds. This is often cited as the single most important benefit to staying with a structured settlement payment arrangement. The idea being that since these funds are free of market volatility, which as we’ve recently seen can be quite brutal, those people who often have a reduced ability to generate income but are collecting on structured settlements have built in spend-thrift protection. So now we’re back to not selling?

Wait a minute. That sounds good in a perfect world, but in this world things happen. When someone is facing foreclosure on a home or are in need of some medical treatment that isn’t covered by insurance they should let the house go or live with sickness just to protect future income? That sounds senseless if you have the ability to ease your life by selling your settlement. Okay. So now we’ve gone back to selling our structured settlement. Is your head spinning yet? Because mine sure is!

If we are going to sell, at least all we have to do is pick the company from whatever “get cash now” commercial we see next on TV. How different can these companies be anyway? The answer is: Very different. If you are going to sell, the single most important thing to do is shop around. The ability to get a lump some of money does come at a cost. There is no question that based on industry averages people will typically lose somewhere between 8 percent and 18 percent of the present value of their remaining payments. But what does the difference of 8% to 18% really mean? Say you shopped around and found that 8% agreement and received $125,000. If you had taken another offer at 18% you only would be receiving $85,000. That’s a $40,000 difference just because you put in some phone time to shop around. And when you consider that some of the companies that spend the most on advertising offer the most disadvantageous deals to their clients.. You could possibly end up with a company that you’ve never heard of if you want the most out of your money.

So are we selling or not? Well, the answer to that question won’t be found in any article online, in a magazine, or some “I know everything about settlements” do it yourself book. I’ve just shown how that choice can waffle back and forth based on many factors and really- the decision is whatever works best for you.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Jun 11

Dare to Say No to Structured Settlement Advances

In my last article we discussed the option of taking a cash advance on your structured settlement while your case is still open. This can be an attractive offer when you are facing some sort of financial crisis  and are “expecting” to win a structured settlement, but haven’t finished the court or settlement process yet. As I said before; You do have the option of applying to various companies to take an advance out on the estimated value of your settlement. Sounds easy. It is. Sounds quick. It is. What it isn’t.. is cheap or necessarily wise. Last time we went over the “Pro’s” of such an advance, and they are many. However, this time we will be focusing on the “Con’s” of such an arrangement.

Expense. While it is true that getting an advance may allow you to hold off on settling to a point where you come out with a larger lump sum, the reverse is also true.. You may come out with much less. As a rough example of costs you can expect to pay $1500- $2500 per $10,000 advanced to you. Also, while you are waiting for your case to settle, your cash advance on your future structured settlement payments will accumulate interest until settlement is made. This can be as low as 2% or as high as 25% depending on the lender you have chosen. Here you must remember that the longer your case takes to settle, the more interest you will have to pay.

Scams. This is a prime time for unscrupulous individuals, businesses, or agencies to take advantage of your need and get you to sign a contract containing many hidden fees leaving you with little to nothing after your settlement is done. If you are considering taking an advance I can not stress enough the importance of reading all the fine print, having everything verbally explained to you, and possibly having any contracts reviewed by an outside attorney.

Can take only days or it could take several months. In many cases you can receive your advance in a matter of days, however it is also possible that after signing for your advance that these companies will include delaying clauses resulting in a situation where you would have received your cash sooner had you never done the advance.

When taking a loan or an advance, take time to calculate what you need – don’t ask for what you want, but ask for what you need. Many people make the mistake of asking for more than they need. If you have other money sources that cost more, then you can justify asking for more, but try to keep within reason – you don’t want to be dinged in high interest rates and fees unless absolutely necessary. Anytime you get a loan or advance, the cash you get costs something.

If you need help selling your structured settlement, annuity or lottery payments,
contact us today. We are here to answer your questions and help you obtain the
highest possible price for your payments.

Let Companies Compete to Buy your Structured Settlement!

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