How Do Structured Settlements Work? : An Insight

Personal injury or medical malpractice plaintiffs who settle cases are often allowed to get their entire due amount in the form of a large single lump sum or an installment of payments over a long period of time. It is these series of payments which are known as structured settlements. Get here detailed information on how do structured settlements work.

Therefore, a structured settlement is basically an agreement wherein a firm or entity agrees to pay a fixed amount of money spread across a specified fixed duration of time.

The decision for frequent question “should I take a structured settlement” is to opt for a structured settlement which depends upon a plethora of factors like the reason for which you want this money, the payee’s credit rating and tax liability and whether or not help is needed in managing this lump sum amount.


The conceptualization of structured settlement was initially introduced back in the 1970s when there emerged a debate about the prospects of selling a lawsuit which lets the recipient get the option of obtaining a regular installment of payment for a long period of time, often spanning a few decades.

The good thing about investing in structured settlements is that they do not prevent the recipients from receiving the benefits arising out of Medicaid or Medicare programs.

Learn how do structured settlements work for better knowledge of periodic money. The ability to get regular income from structured settlements as opposed to one single lump sum also helps the recipient avoid the compulsions of paying huge medical bills all at once, which can also impede their plans of using other options like insurance plans or seeking assistance from the government.

How Do Structured Settlements Work?

Structured settlements annuities essentially refer to contracts which are offered by insurance firms. As mentioned before, these products are intended to undertake regular payments to the recipients for a fixed period of time especially in specific gaps. In a lot of cases, annuities also entail the death benefit option which specifies that the remaining amount would be channeled to a beneficiary in the unfortunate situation of the demise of the original recipient.

An annuity structured settlement can be offered in two options: Immediate or Deferred. In the case of an immediate annuity, the holder may start getting the benefit payments almost right away after having been deposited.

On the other hand, in the case of a deferred annuity, the holder will need wait to wait for a specific length of time before actually gaining possession of their due funds. The money which is present in the annuity account gets safeguarded from taxes until its withdrawal.

Other details

Structured settlement companies sometimes make use of annuities for holding and distributing settlement funding which is arising out of a huge settlement. The reason why structured settlements and selling structured settlement are so popular is because they guarantee a fixed amount of money as opposed to the pay out of one major lump sum to the holder.

Reasons why the recipient do not choose to get it all

There might be a plethora of reasons as to why the recipient of a huge monetary award opts not to take it all. These include:

  • Considerations relating to tax
  • The option not to exhaust the entire money swiftly
  • Shield from inadequate cash management

During the usage of structured settlements, the money gets placed into an annuity agreement with an insurance firm. The recipient is usually announced as the annuitant, the one who will obtain the amount to be paid under the annuity contract. Subsequently, a payment schedule is created. All you require to know how do structured settlements work.

The contours of a structured settlement generally include:

  • The agreement of structured settlement
  • An application for annuity
  • A directive from the court (in some cases that involve a minor)
  • An annuity structured settlement policy

The insurance firm offering the annuity deal will figure out the regular income that is to be paid to the recipient. It will also include payments the due principal amount in addition to the amount premised on investment returns or the accruing interest as per the annuity contract.