Selling a structured settlement is one of the first things some people think about doing after winning a lawsuit or insurance claim. Medical malpractice lawsuits amounted to $3.6 billion in 2013 and lawsuits won by employees average $150,000 in payments. Many people don’t have time to wait around and collect minimal annual checks though. They want the cash for structured settlement payments immediately to use at their discretion. This can be a wise decision as it will allow you to pay off bills, make a large purchase, or save for the future in the way you choose. Here are three things to consider before selling a structured settlement to ensure you get the most bang for your buck.
1.) Compare Rates: The first thing you’ll want to do when deciding to sell your structured settlements is comparison shop. Don’t jump at the first business that offers you a handful of cash. In order to come from a position of strength in negotiating it’s important to talk with multiple companies and see how much they’ll give you. Don’t be afraid to use your potential business to your advantage. Let them know straight up that you’re looking to get the most cash for your settlement and that competitors have offered more. Even if they haven’t necessarily. It’s a dog eat dog world, a little fib is the way business is done.
2.) Create a Budget: Once you’ve lined up a suitor for your settlement it’s time to plan out a short-term budget. Even if you’re sure you don’t need it. Getting a large amount of cash at one time can make people act in strange ways. Don’t let your mind stray. Create a budget for the next couple weeks or month to ensure you don’t blow through all the money you get. Remember, 70% of all lottery winners lose all their money within five years. Don’t become a statistic.
3.) Invest Long-Term: Selling a structured settlement can seem risky because it is a form of income that you can count on for years to come. That’s why it’s just as important to plan your long-term investment when you map out your short-term budget. Whether you want to be risky or conservative with your money is up to you and your financial adviser, but you are best off diversifying your portfolio. Set yourself for success down the road and make the sale a lifelong benefit.