If you’re looking for a structured settlement transfer, the first step is to start contacting companies and ask for quotes to see what kind of offers you get for your annuity.
Doing this is actually fairly easy, as you can search for structured settlement buyers over the internet and when you find them either give them a call and see what they say, or use the online calculator that most companies provide to work out what your settlement is worth.
The quotes you are offered will vary from company to company, depending on what kind of discount rate is offered.
This could be anything from between 10% to 30%, though you do need to ask about additional expenses, such as court fees, processing fees and so on to be sure of the final amount you can expect to take home.
Sign the contract
Once you have settled on a buyer and gone through all the negotiations, the company will draw up an official contract for you to sign.
The contract should clearly indicate the amount of structured settlement money the buyer is paying you in return for you transferring the annuity to them. Additionally, the contract should also clearly spell out the expenses involved and what deductions will be taken out of the sale amount.
As well as signing the contract, sellers are also required to sign an affidavit which spells out why you want to sell your structured settlement for cash.
Petition is filed
After the contracts are signed, your structured settlement transfer will be carefully reviewed before a petition is filed with the local court by an attorney.
At the review stage, various checks will be carried out to see if you have any creditors – for example, unpaid taxes or open bankruptcies that would have to be paid off from the money you receive.
Finally, your petition will be filed and a court date set for your hearing before a county court judge.
The court hearing
The court hearing is where you find out if you can actually sell your structured settlement or not. Generally, you will be required to attend the court hearing, although there are a few states that have an exception to this rule. Dress smartly and make sure you appear on time if your presence is required.
The hearing itself will normally only take a few minutes, during which the judge will review the documentation of the case and ask you or your attorney a few questions. After this, the judge will make his decision, and in the majority of cases selling structured settlement payments is allowed.
However, do be aware that the judge could deny your application for structured settlement transfer if he or she decides it is not in your best interest to do so.
Reasons for denial include the judge not believing your reasons for wanting to sell, or the judge might decide that the rates being charged by the buyer are too high.
Receive the money
The final step – you get your money at last. Assuming the judge has allowed the transfer to proceed, the buyer will be able to immediately credit your account with the agreed funds, although it may take a few days to process.