Did you know that in order to sell your structured settlement payments, you must first get approval from a judge at a structured settlementhearing?
Are you scheduled for a structured settlement hearing and want to know what to expect at a hearing to sell your payments?
Keep reading for what you can expect at a hearing to sell structured settlement payments.
Why is there a structured settlement hearing to sell my payments?
In 2002, a statute, went into place that set forth the rules for selling structured settlement payments. One of the conditions for selling your structured settlement payments is that you attend a structured settlement hearing in which a judge will decide that selling your payments is in your best interest. This process provides a way to protect you and to verify that your best interest is being reviewed by someone other than the purchasing company.
What can I expect at a structured settlement hearing?
When it’s your turn to stand before the judge at your structured settlement hearing, you may be called up by yourself, or you may be called up with a group of people who are also selling structured settlement payments. The judge typically asks questions such as:
- Please confirm your identity
- Do you understand the terms of the transfer
- Do you know what payments you are selling?
- Do you know what amount you are receiving for those payments?
- How will you be using the money?
- Do you want me to approve your transfer.
The rules for selling structured settlement payments have been put in place for your protection, and the judge will consider many factors before deciding whether to approve a structured settlement transfer.
How will the judge decide, at my structured settlement hearing, if selling my structured settlement payments is in my best interest?
Judges typically have criteria that they consider when deciding whether to approve a structured settlement transfer which includes whether the transfer agreement is fair and reasonable and in your best interest. The petition and any other supporting documents provided to the judge will give relevant information for him or her to consider.
Some of the information that the judge might want to know at your structured settlement hearing:
- That the transfer is in your best interest as well as the best interests of anyone that you’re legally responsible to support.
- Were you advised, by the company purchasing your payments, to seek independent professional advice. If so, did you receive independent professional advice or did you waive your right to independent professional advice. (Some states do not allow you to waive your right to independent professional advice.)
- If you understand the disclosure statement and the contract you signed.
- The purpose of the transfer and your intended use of the funds that you’ll receive for selling your structured settlement payments.
- Whether selling your structured settlement payments will cause a financial hardship for you and any of your dependents. (In other words, whether you will be able to pay your necessary living expenses if you sell your structured settlement payments.) He or she might also consider whether your family might experience a financial hardship if the transfer is not approved.
- If you’re currently working or if you’re able to find a job.
- If you’ve recently experienced a change in personal, family, or financial circumstances.
- If you’ve sold or tried to sell structured settlement payments in the past.
How long will the hearing last?
This will depend on the specific judge and how many people are on his or her schedule for that day. You should plan to arrive at least 30 minutes before your hearing, and prepare that the hearing could take an hour of your time. Sometimes you can arrive on time for your structured settlement hearing and the court is running behind. Plan to take the day off from other activities to allow the time to get approval.
For more information about selling structured settlement payments and what you can expect at a structured settlement hearing, or to receive a free, no-obligation quote on your structured settlement