Depending on your level of familiarity with structured settlements, there are certainly more than three questions you should ask, but we believe asking these questions should help you gain a good enough understanding to decide if a structured settlement is a good option for you.
Question #1: Where can I find information about structured settlements?
To learn about structured settlements, you can start with articles and videos on this Independent Life website - the most relevant being:
- What is a Structured Settlement?
- Qualified vs. Non-Qualified Structured Settlements
- The Value of a Structured Settlement Consultant
If you or your attorney have already retained a structured settlement consultant or settlement planner, he or she should be able to answer your questions and provide you with additional informational resources.
If you do not already have a structured settlement consultant or settlement planner, the two leading national professional associations are the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) and the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP). Each website includes a members list.
Before selecting a consultant, however, you should confirm the following details in advance: 1) his or her qualifications; 2) what services he or she can provide; and 3) the cost of those services – if they are not included as part of his or her contingent commission.
Most importantly, if you are considering a structured settlement, you should not rely on the defendant's structured settlement advisor, it is important that you have your own consultant to advocate on your behalf.
Question #2: With interest rates so low, is it even a good idea to choose a structured settlement?
At first glance, when you consider the promises and possibilities of alternative investment opportunities, current interest rates for structured settlement annuities may seem too low to provide an appropriate settlement option. The primary benefits of a structured settlement will always be reliability and preservation of your award to meet your long-term goals and needs.
A structured settlement annuity is one of the safest choices you can make with your money. Structured settlement annuity providers, like Independent Life, are required to make very prudent decisions in their investment portfolio. As a result, structured settlement annuities are mostly exempt from market fluctuations and volatility. So, while you won’t experience big investment gains, more importantly, you are protected against investment losses.
When you adjust your thinking about structured settlements and look at structured settlements not just as an investment, but as a financial preservation tool, you begin to see their true value. This financial preservation is especially important in complex personal injury cases if you will require ongoing medical care for the rest of your life. Setting up a structured settlement guarantees you will receive funds for future monthly medical expenses and allows you to plan for anticipated needs.
Question #3: What sets Independent Life apart from other life insurance companies that offer structured settlements?
Independent Life is the first annuity provider to focus exclusively on the structured settlement market to help personal injury victims and their families. We are solely dedicated to the structured settlement marketplace and our investments are specifically tailored to meet the needs of our structured settlement obligations.
We make it our mission to help personal injury victims and their families with structured settlements to secure lifelong payments for future expenses.
We do that, in part, with best-in-class service and by providing superior payouts to injured persons with our market-leading medical underwriting processes. Independent Life’s management team brings extensive knowledge to the structured settlement market. Several of our executives have held leadership roles in the industry for many years. We maintain a robust risk management process. Independent Life’s Risk Based Capital ratios are in line or better than other companies offering annuities to fund structured settlements. We created the first Payee Protection Policy in the structured settlement industry to offer you extra security.
The bottom line?
Structured settlements are a safe choice that protect you from many risks, provide lifelong payments, preserve public benefits and free you up to do what only you can do: live your best life.