by John Darer® CLU ChFC CSSC RSP CLTC
From time to time we get calls from people looking to sell their structured settlement payments. For over 5 years, having observed that the quality of information provided to such callers was inconsistent, I have chosen to try to help fill that gap as part of a pro bono service. I chose to invest the time to build up more "intellectual capital" on the subject so that I would be better able to answer questions. While selling structured settlement payments certainly isn't the first choice to raise liquidity, in some cases it IS the only choice. When push comes to shove, my industry brethren will begrudgingly admit it. If it is, it is not hard to be cynical about the quality of advice one might expect to get from what amounts to an "order taker" at a call center who may not have the years of financial training that I have, or the professional credentials.
Yesterday I received a call from a lady from the Midwest who felt like she was getting the run around. Fortunately she reads the Structured Settlements 4Real blog and she decided to call. We spent 20 or so minutes on the phone, after which, I believe her questions were answered and issues resolved. Most notable to other annuitants who find themselves in a pinch, with no other solution, is that this woman was able to preserve over $30,000 more of the present value of the payments she was selling by shopping around. One company offered her $62,000 and the finalists were in excess of $92,000! Earlier this year I reported on a story where, according to what we were told and saw (from the required information the selling annuitant entered into to a factoring exchange bid request form as his/her best offer received), one factoring intemediary offered an annuitant $84,000, prior to the seller going to the factoring exchnage, while the winning bid ended up being 50% more. Moral of the story: It's bad enough you have to sell, but don't blow it by not shopping around.
Here's an excerpt from the nice note I received.