by Structured Settlement Watchdog
McClatchy has followed up last Fall's award winning muti-part expose of the business of structured settlement factoring in South Carolina (that stimulated efforts to reform structured settlement factoring) with a new video released March 12, 2023, which asserts "commercials convince accident victims to give up their financial futures". Sellers explain why they regret those decisions years later. One South Carolina seller said selling his stuctured settlement was "the biggest regret of his life".
Journalists David Weissman, Gina Smith and Kata Stevens' new special report features commercials from Chesterbrook Pennsylvania's JG Wentworth and Peachtree (which is a brand of JG Wentworth), the largest and most well known structured settlement factoring company with most pervasive commercials, as well as Fort Lauderdale's 123 Lump Sum and a related brand **Cash (Star Star Cash), followed by impact statements from three South Carolina residents impacted by structured settlement factoring.
It is not clear whether the individuals who made the victim impact statements in the McClatchy video, did business with any of the companies whose commercials were displayed in the video, or why the specific videos were chosen. Nevertheless it's another piece of wood on the fire burning unavoidable awareness under the already toasty rumps of members of the South Carolina state legislature who were spurred into considering massive changes to better protect citizens of South Carolina with structured settlements after the first installment of the McClatchy expose appeared in September 2022.
The video is also a clarion call to potential sellers to get independent professional advice. One of the victims in the video said she couldn't afford to pay an advisor. Some state laws say that independent professional advice fees cannot be paid by the structured settlement factoring company while other states, like California, say that up to $1,500 of fees for independent professional advice may be paid by the structured settlement factoring company.
It's unwise to proceed without independent professional advice, even if not mandatory in your state.
Have a conversation with someone knowledegable, other than the structured settlement factoring company representative. And sellers, the lawyer that is hired by the structured settlement factoring company offering to buy your payments, IS NOT your lawyer.
SC Legislators Pressured to Up South Carolina Structured Settlement Protections After Troubling Findings - Structured Settlements 4Real® Blog: Structured Settlements | Settlement Planning News and Commentary (typepad.com)
Investigation Into SC Structured Settlement Factoring Predation Rolls Out in 4 Part BOMBSHELL Report - Structured Settlements 4Real® Blog: Structured Settlements | Settlement Planning News and Commentary (typepad.com)