Blog

Dominion Assignment Company

Founded by insurance industry experts, Independent Life has challenged traditional conventions and introduced innovation and an impressive roster of world class partners to the structured settlement market – including LKCM Headwater, KKR’s Kilter Finance, Hannover Re U.S. and BlackRock. Our most recent innovation is iStructure – our indexed annuity which combines traditional structured settlement benefits...

Non-Qualified Assignments and Structured Installment Sales

A non-qualified assignment is a transfer of payment obligations that does not qualify under IRC Section 130. Non-qualified assignments, however, do share certain similarities as well as certain differences with assignments that do qualify under IRC Section 130 (“qualified assignments”).   Qualified Assignments Compared The term “qualified assignment” is defined for tax purposes by IRC...

Road Traffic Safety

Many structured settlement recipients are victims of road traffic accidents – as drivers, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists or innocent bystanders. Independent Life believes road traffic safety represents a complementary goal that all structured settlement and settlement planning professionals should not only support but also proactively advocate.   National Roadway Safety Strategy Earlier this year, United States...

Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments Release 71

For many settlement planners and structured settlement annuity providers, the dominant storylines of the past two years have been COVID-19 (COVID), low interest rates and plummeting structured settlement annuity sales.  In 2019, based on industry reports, $6.47 billion of annuities were purchased to fund 26,486 structured settlement cases, for an average per case premium of $244,228.....

Factoring: Is Judicial Education Really the Solution?

For the past 20 plus years, two related industry issues have dominated the strategic agenda of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA): 1) factoring (aka the transfer of structured settlement payment rights) and 2) lack of growth in the primary structured settlement market.   NSSTA’s Legislation Accomplishment By the end of the 1990s, NSSTA...

Settlement Planning Compensation Models

With few exceptions, the topic of consultant compensation receives limited public discussion within the structured settlement and settlement planning communities. A quick review of the websites of three national associations whose members sell structured settlement annuities, NSSTA, AASC,  and SSP, appears to indicate only SSP even mentions the word “compensation.” The SSP references to “compensation”...

MLK, Jr. and the Right Side of History

MLK, Jr. and the Right Side of History Today we honor the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who vocally and bodily advocated for social justice through non-violent social change in defiance of historical precedent. We now acknowledge that precedent was wrong and that history was violent. Today is a good day...

Structured Settlements and Peter Drucker’s Business Principles

In its annual evaluation of America’s best-run publicly traded companies, the Wall Street Journal uses a measurement system based upon five business principles developed by the late management guru Peter F. Drucker, the founder of the Drucker Institute, to select its Top 250: 1) customer satisfaction; 2) employee engagement and development; 3) innovation; 4) social...

2021 The Year In Review

Among his many memorable quotes, Winston Churchill is credited with being the first to say “never let a good crisis go to waste.” Judging solely by reported structured settlement premium production, most structured settlement professionals and companies appear to have ignored Mr. Churchill’s advice for the second consecutive year. As the COVID pandemic continues to...

Future Financial Planning for People with Disabilities – Part 3

The National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities (NLCDD) at the University of Delaware has published a new National Study (Study) titled “Future Financial Planning for People with Disabilities” on its website that should be required reading for all structured settlement and settlement planning professionals. Introduction The purpose of this NLCDD project was to study future financial planning for people with disabilities...

Future Financial Planning for People with Disabilities – Part 2

A prior Independent Life article (Part 1) summarizes key elements of a new National Study (Study) titled “Future Financial Planning for People with Disabilities,” conducted by the National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities (NLCDD) at the University of Delaware and is available on its website. Part 1 includes a “Correction at the end of the article which was added...

Future Financial Planning for People with Disabilities – Part 1

One of the highlights of the recent Stetson 2021 National Conference on Special Needs Planning and Special Needs Trusts was a presentation of the results of a new National Study (Study) titled “Future Financial Planning for People with Disabilities.” Presented by Cory Gilden and Caitlin Bailey, the Study was conducted by the National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities (NLCDD) at the University of Delaware and is available...

Factoring Problems and Solutions – Part 2

When the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) supported enactment of IRC Section 5891 as part of the Victims of Terrorism Tax Relief Act of 2001 and began a successful state by state process to help secure enactment of state structured settlement protection acts (SSPAs) in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, NSSTA envisioned the...

Factoring Problems and Solutions – Part 1

The National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA), of which this writer is a member, has scheduled a virtual 2021 Fall Conference this week to be hosted by Executive Director Eric Vaughn, President Michael Goodman and Director Ravi Vaswani. The conference Agenda features Suze Orman as well as important and timely topics during a transformative period for NSSTA and the structured settlement...

Periodic Payments After Settlement

When Congress passed the Periodic Payment Act of 1982, the stated intent was to provide a secure and steady flow of periodic payments to claimants. At the time of settlement or judgment, the claimant foregoes immediate access to a lump sum in exchange for a secure promise of tax-free payments over time. From society’s perspective,...

Anti-Assignment Language

Almost all structured settlements are completed on a basis that qualifies future payments for tax-free treatment under I.R.C. § 104(a) and 130. One of the requirements for a “qualified assignment” under IRC 130 is that “periodic payments cannot be accelerated, deferred, increased, or decreased by the recipient of such payments.” In addition to this statutory language,...

Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments Release 70

Since it was first published in 1986, “Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments” , has provided structured settlement stakeholders with an authoritative reference guide, consisting of 16 chapters with extensive footnotes and Appendix documents, to help them understand historical development as well as current issues and fashion settlements and judgments utilizing periodic payments. Personal Injury Settlement Planning...

The Patel Memo – Twenty Years Later

Daniel Anders, President of the National MSP Network (NMSP) sent a newsletter last week alerting this writer and other NMSP members of an historic settlement planning anniversary. On July 23, 2001, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released, under the name of Parashar B. Patel, Deputy Director, Purchasing Policy Group for CMS, what...

 
 

Do you have questions about how reinsurance works in general, or specifically the reinsurance agreement between Hannover Re US and Independent Life? You have come to the right place! Settlement Nation co-hosts, Chris Bua and Courtney Barber interview Independent Life’s CEO Jimmy Atkins, where Jimmy dives into all of this and more. Check out the entire interview or skip to a...

Expanding ABLE Through Collaboration

Last week, the National Association of State Treasurers (NAST) sponsored its 2021 Treasury Management Training Symposium, which occurred virtually and featured a panel titled “Expanding ABLE Through Different Types of Collaboration.” Moderated by Amy Corbin, Executive Director for the ABLE Authority which oversees Indiana’s state ABLE plan, the panelists included: Mary Rubenis, Associate Director responsible for...

CMS WCMSA Reference Guide Version 3.3

When the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published the most recent Version 3.3 of its Workers Compensation Medicare Set-Aside Arrangement (WCMSA) Reference Guide on April 19, 2021, no one within the structured settlement or settlement planning marketplaces appears to have noticed a development that could impact structured settlements annuities. Enacted in 1980, the Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP)...

Book Review: Investing is Your Superpower

“We can’t become what we need to by remaining what we are.” – Oprah Winfrey In her new book titled “Investing is Your Superpower,” written primarily for the types of female professionals who have organized the National Structured Settlement Trade Association’s Women’s Caucus and the American Association of Settlement Consultants’ Alliance for Women, Shinobu Hindert prefaces her concluding chapter...

A Review of the NSSTA 2021 Annual Conference

NSSTA President Michael Goodman opened the 2021 National Structured Settlement Trade Association Conference, hosted virtually May 5-7 by Goodman, NSSTA Executive Director Eric Vaughn and Director Ravi Vaswani, by announcing he plans to ask NSSTA’s new Board of Directors to review and re-write the NSSTA Mission Statement as part of a strategic review of “what we are and what we will be.”...

Pre-NSSTA Structured Settlement History

Congratulations to the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) which will be celebrating its 35th Anniversary as part of its 2021 virtual Annual Conference May 4-7. Despite Pre-NSSTA’s lengthy and significant history, members may not be fully aware of the many events which preceded NSSTA’s formation in 1986 which played an important role in the history...

Soldiers vs. Scouts: The NSSTA 2021 Annual Conference

In her new book titled “The Scout Mindset”, author Julia Galef, co-founder of the Center for Applied Rationality, utilizes a comparative military metaphor, “soldiers vs. scouts,” to contrast two antithetical types of mindsets and methods of reasoning. Metaphorically speaking: A soldier mindset causes an individual or a group to defend their beliefs against perceived threats, to seek out supporting...

Let’s Talk About: QSF Education and Issues

As the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) prepares to recognize its own 35th Anniversary during its upcoming 2021 virtual Annual Conference, it is also appropriate to note another important settlement planning development that occurred in 1986: the enactment of IRC 468B – with important regulations and revenue procedures added in 1993. What are Qualified...

Settlement Nation Episode 19: Inside 30 Years as a Civil Rights Lawyer

In this episode of Settlement Nation I chat with James DeSimone,  the founder of V. James DeSimone Law. James is one of the most highly regarded employment lawyers and civil rights advocates in Los Angeles, successfully achieving multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts on behalf of his clients. James was voted California Civil Rights Lawyer of the Year 2014,...

Let’s Talk About: Judges, Mediators and Settlement Planning

Judges and mediators play important, but distinctive, roles in settlement planning. So it may have surprised some attendees that a recent Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) 2021 Annual Conference virtual presentation advertised as the “Judiciary Panel: Planning from the Court’s Perspective” featured two mediators (one a retired judge) and focused on mediation not judicial issues. Skillfully moderated...

Let’s Talk About: Settlement Planning

If you market yourself as a “settlement planner”, or even consider yourself a “settlement planner”, how do you define “settlement planning?” During his presentation titled “Expanding Your Planning Network & Advanced Certifications,” featured as part of the recent Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) 2021 virtual Annual Conference, multi-credentialled settlement planner Joseph Tombs highlighted this issue,...

Settlement Nation Episode 18: Billion Dollar Trials – Aimee Wagstaff

In this episode of Settlement Nation we chat with Aimee Wagstaff, the founding partner of Andrus Wagstaff. Aimee has dedicated her professional life fighting against pharmaceutical and medical device companies. The vast majority of her litigation is done through national mass tort consolidations and she has been appointed by federal and state court Judges across the country to...

Let’s Talk About: Approved Lists, Rated Age and Beneficiary Protection

During its three-day 2021 Annual Conference in late February, the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) hosted 20 separate virtual presentations addressing a variety of settlement planning topics and featuring many industry experts. For conference attendees, SSP has made the video presentations available on a privately accessible online site for convenient asynchronous viewing and/or re-viewing. For...

Settlement Nation Episode 17: Trial Tactics & Trusting the Jury

In this episode of Settlement Nation we sit down with Brett Turnbull, the Founding partner of The Turnbull Law Firm, with offices in Alabama and Georgia. Trial Tactics Brett has been recognized for his many multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements, representing clients in trucking, products liability, automobile defects, pediatric burns, traumatic brain injury and nursing home malpractice. We...

Let’s Talk About: Privacy of Medical Records and Personal Data

During a discussion of “Life Company Basics” featured as part of the recent Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) virtual 2021 Annual Conference, a question was raised, but not fully answered, about the privacy of medical records. Most structured settlement negotiations require information about the claimant, such as birth date and medical condition. The birth date is essential...

Periodic Payment Judgments Release 69

Because settlements represent voluntary agreements, neither plaintiffs nor defendants can be forced to participate in a structured settlement. Structured settlements initially were promoted exclusively by defendants and their insurers as a claim management tool. For many years, plaintiff and their attorneys lacked equivalent resources. Today, however, many plaintiffs and their attorneys insist they should be:...

Let’s Talk About: Adding Value & Protecting an Attorney’s Practice

One of the more intriguing panel discussions scheduled later this week during the Society of Settlement Planners’ (SSP) 2021 Annual Conference will feature Paul Isaac, Jeremy Babener, Jack Meligan and Jason Lazarus in a Breakout Session titled: “Adding Value: Protecting the Attorney’s Practice.” Anticipating this panel of settlement planning experts, we thought the perspective of a structured...

Let’s Talk About: Structuring Attorney Fees

Plaintiff attorneys are continuing to gain an understanding of the benefits of structuring their attorney fees, a unique tool, solely available to their profession, that offers an exclusive and excellent way to enhance financial security, both now and in the future. Structured attorney fees, which can defer taxes on contingency fees, allow plaintiff attorneys to...

Let’s Talk About Factoring

About Factoring Continuing a series of articles previewing selected topics at the upcoming Society of Settlement Planners’ (SSP’s) virtual 2021 Annual Conference, which has already addressed “product suitability” and “mass torts”, this article asks: “Is it possible to avoid predatory practices in the Secondary Structured Settlement market? And if so how?” Despite the enactment of IRC Section 5891 and Structured Settlement Protection Acts in 49...

Independent Insurance Group LLC Announces New Signing

New Signing JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Feb. 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Independent Insurance Group LLC (“Independent Group”) announced today the signing of a definitive agreement for an investment by Kilter Finance, an insurance-focused specialty finance company backed by KKR. Launched in 2018, Independent Group is the parent of Independent Life Insurance Company (“Independent Life”), the first insurance carrier to focus exclusively...

Let’s Talk About: Mass Torts and Structured Settlements

Upon reviewing the agenda for the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) 2021 Annual Conference there is one session that falls outside the normal industry curriculum: Ryan Garrison’s Breakout Session titled “Demystifying the Mass Tort Market: an Attorney’s Perspective of Planner Value.” Although both SSP and the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) may have previously addressed mass tort tangentially, the mass tort topic...

Independent Insurance Group LLC acquires Sterling National Life

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Jan. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Independent Insurance Group LLC (“Independent Group”) today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Sterling National Life Insurance Company (“Sterling National”) from SILAC Insurance Company (“SILAC”). Independent Life Insurance Company (“Independent Life”), Independent Group’s life and annuity subsidiary, is focused on the primary issuance of structured settlement...

Let’s Talk About: Suitability and Settlement Planning

The Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) will host its virtual 2021 Annual Conference for February 23-25 and has already announced the session topics and most of the speakers. One session which should provoke considerable discussion is titled “Suitability and Settlement Planning.” It appears to reference language in SSP’s Practice Standard #9 within the Settlement Planning Practice Standards (Practice Standards)...

Settlement Nation Episode 14: Greyson Goody

In this episode of Settlement Nation we sit down with Greyson Goody, a partner and senior trial attorney at The Simon Law Group, who has obtained over $40 million in jury verdicts. We discuss the advantages of being a younger trial attorney, how he is leveraging technology in this industry and his strategy behind using marketing and branding to...

New Blog Series: Let’s Talk About…

Let’s Talk About Conference season, albeit virtual, has officially kicked off with both the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) and the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) announcing dates for their virtual 2021 Annual Conferences: February 23-25 for SSP and May 4-7 for NSSTA. SSP has already launched their conference website highlighting their agenda topics and speakers with a healthy mix of anticipated...

Society of Actuaries Structured Settlement Mortality Studies

Every structured settlement professional is familiar with the term “substandard age rating” as well as the important role more generally of “mortality risk” as one rationale for selecting a structured settlement. Not all structured settlement professionals, however, are aware that the Society of Actuaries (SOA) has sponsored and published six intercompany studies of mortality experience related to...

Independent Life Insurance Company Announces Reinsurance Agreement

DALLAS, Jan. 4, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Independent Life Insurance Company (“Independent Life”) announced today it has entered into a reinsurance agreement with Hannover Life Reassurance Company of America (“Hannover Re US”), rated A+ by A.M. Best. In accordance with this agreement, effective October 1, 2020 Hannover Re US will reinsure a percentage of Independent Life’s in-force business and new business....

Settlement Nation Episode 10: Arash Homampour

In this episode of Settlement Nation  we chat with Arash Homampour, a trial attorney and the owner of the Homampour Firm in California, representing individuals in catastrophic injury/wrongful death, employment and insurance bad faith matters. Arash shares his success of obtaining between $2.5 million to $60 million in trial results in the last 5 years for his clients, as well...

IRS Publishes Final ABLE Regulations (Part 2)

Since The ABLE Act created IRC 529A in 2014, 49 states have passed legislation to implement ABLE and ABLE accounts have become popular financial and settlement planning tools for qualifying disabled individuals. Although the statutory foundation for ABLE programs and ABLE accounts exists within the Internal Revenue Code, ABLE account benefits encompass both income tax and social security related advantages.   ABLE Account...

Settlement Nation Episode 9: Jim Avery

In this episode of Settlement Nation we chat with Jim Avery, a plaintiff attorney and the owner of Avery Injury Law in Missouri. Jim is a three-time combat veteran in the United States Marine Corps and Army National Guard, touring both Iraq and Afghanistan. Jim shares his story about serving in units that performed IED destruction missions and how he...

IRS Publishes Final ABLE Regulations

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has published final regulations that provide guidance regarding programs under the Stephen Beck, Jr., Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2014.The ABLE Act added IRC Section 529A to the Internal Revenue Code which was enacted as part of the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014. Section 529A provides rules under which states or state...

Settlement Nation Episode 8: Dan Schaar

In this episode of Settlement Nation, we chat with Dan Schaar, a trial attorney with Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley (CZ&R) and Trial Lawyers For Justice (TL4J) from Northern California. We walk through Dan’s $2.8 million verdict for one of California’s largest slip and fall cases in 2018, advice for other trial attorneys that leads to better results for their clients and the...

NSSTA Virtual Business Meeting and Fall Educational Conference 2020

A five star success! Awesome! Amazing! Blown away! These were some of the immediate reactions to the three-day National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) virtual Fall Conference hosted last week from Los Angeles by NSSTA President Louis Masry and Executive Director Eric Vaughn. Beginning with videotaped welcoming vignettes from more than 20 geographically dispersed members, the NSSTA conference seamlessly integrated...

Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments Book Release 68

Since it was first published in 1986, “Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments” (S2P2J), has provided structured settlement stakeholders with an authoritative reference guide, consisting of 16 chapters with extensive footnotes and Appendix documents, to help them understand historical development as well as current issues and fashion settlements and judgments utilizing periodic payments. Both the National Structured Settlement...

Settlement Nation Episode 6: Keith Bruno

In the first of this two-part series on Settlement Nation, we chat with with Keith Bruno, a trial attorney with Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley (CZ&R) out of Orange County. Keith shares insights into his beginnings as a young lawyer on NBC’s “The Law Firm“, what it’s like to have 150 trials under his belt, as well as courtroom advice for...

Griffiths v. Aviva

Perhaps it is not surprising, for a business that results from personal injury claims and lawsuits, that sometimes participants in the structured settlement market should themselves become defendants in class action lawsuits. For example, in October 2018, the parties to the Griffiths v. Aviva class action lawsuit settled concluding a dispute involving more than 4000...

Independent Insurance Group (IIG), an innovative insurer whose mission is to improve the lives of victims of serious injury and those who serve them, announced today that George Luecke has been hired as President & Chief Strategy Officer. His duties will include setting IIG’s strategic direction as well as overseeing initiatives to enhance IIG’s market presence and...

Re-cycled Structured Settlement Payment Rights

Historically, most investors who purchase structured settlement payment rights from factoring companies are sophisticated investors, wealthy individuals or financial institutions. Ironically, some of these investors are life insurance companies who also sell structured settlement annuities. Typically, these investors are taxed on the income generated by these investments even when the claimant who originally owned the...

Wrongfully Incarcerated Individuals

The number of exonerations for wrongfully incarcerated individuals has increased for the third year in a row, according to The National Registry of Exonerations, with an average of over three exonerations per week across the United States. Experts attribute this leap to a growing trend of accountability in prosecutorial offices around the country. How might this influx...

Settlement Nation Episode 5: Jason Lazarus

This episode of Settlement Nation we chat with Jason Lazarus, a legal settlement services expert out of Orlando, Florida.Jason discusses several of the topics covered in his new book, The Art of Settlement, intended to help attorneys avoid mistakes when finalizing a settlement. If you are a personal injury attorney, this is a MUST listen for...

Settlement Nation Episode 4: Megan Hottman

This episode of Settlement Nation we chat with with Megan Hottman, a powerhouse health and wellness advocate, cycling enthusiast, podcast host, and attorney out of Golden, Colorado. Megan shares her insights on running a successful practice while maintaining balance. We cover how she became “The Cyclist Lawyer“, tips to increase your personal energy levels and presentation in and out...

Book Review: The Art of Settlement

Although the personal injury settlement planning profession now offers plaintiff attorneys, and its own members, an increasing variety of educational resources, few guides to regulatory compliance currently exist – and those that do tend to be specialized. Robert Wood has authored definitive legal textbooks about “Taxation of Damage Awards and Settlement Payments” as well as “Qualified...

Case Study: Catastrophic Injury

Catastrophic Injury A mother and her five-year-old son were in a car accident in 2018 and both suffered extensive injuries. The mother sustained multiple broken bones, including several ribs. The child was in critical condition with injuries that required him to be placed into a medically-induced coma. Ultimately the five-year-old needed multiple surgeries to correct...

Settlement Nation Episode 3: Brian Ward

This episode of Settlement Nation we chat with with Brian Ward, an attorney with Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley (CZ&R) out of Los Angeles. Brian shares his story, on how he was sworn in early straight of out law school, to begin his first jury trial, how his own personal injury has shaped the way he relates to the challenges his...

Comparing the Advantages: ABLE Accounts vs. Special Needs Trusts

The COVID-19 pandemic and near zero long term Treasury rates have required both structured settlement professionals and settlement planners to re-think how they market and how they sell structured settlement annuities. Serena Fitchard, nicely summarized a more expansive structured settlement sales approach during a recent National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) webinar: “structured settlements serve a greater...

Celebrating $250M with a Giveaway!

For so many people starting a business and watching it succeed through hard work, courage, and a little bit of luck is the American dream. This certainly embodies the journey our team at Independent Life has experienced.  As a result of those factors and the growing support of settlement professionals and attorneys across the country,...

Defining Income: IRC vs. SSA

IRC vs. SSA Every structured settlement and settlement planning professional is presumably well-familiar with the Internal Revenue Code definition of Gross Income in IRC 61 as well as the exclusion for periodic payments in IRC 104(a)(1) and (2), plus many other Internal Revenue Code Sections (130; 468B; 5891) and tax concepts (constructive receipt; economic benefit) that have become the foundation...

Case Study: Medicare Set-Asides

Medicare Set-Asides A self-insured municipality referred a case involving a 54-year old police officer who sustained catastrophic injuries attempting to take a suspect into custody.   The Case The police officer received conservative treatment initially and eventually underwent multiple surgeries to aid his recovery. After his surgeries, complications arose, and he was living in constant...

Settlement Nation Episode 2: Grant Lawson

This episode of Settlement Nation is a discussion with plaintiff attorney Grant Lawson, a partner with the Metier Law Firm and President-Elect of the Wyoming Trial Lawyers Association (WTLA). Grant shares his story, from being hired by The Spence Law Firm while he was still in law school, to being mentored by Gerry Spence, one of the greatest trial lawyers in American history....

Settlement Nation Episode 1: Michael Upchurch

The Independent Life team is excited to introduce our new podcast, Settlement Nation!  In our inaugural episode, co-host, Chris Bua sits down with Michael Upchurch. Michael is the founder of two companies that are improving the way injury victims and their attorneys resolve litigation: Independent Life, a plaintiff-focused structured settlement provider that was the 2nd-fastest growing annuity provider in the...

ABLE Accounts + Structured Settlements, Now a Possibility?

Since The ABLE Act created IRC 529A in 2014, ABLE accounts have become popular financial and settlement planning tools for qualifying disabled individuals. The ABLE Act allows states to create tax-advantaged savings programs for eligible people with disabilities that began prior to age 26. Funds from these 529A ABLE accounts can help designated beneficiaries pay for qualified disability expenses. Distributions are...

Case Study: Workers’ Compensation

A 40 year-old male employee was catastrophically injured during an auto accident resulting in paraplegia and a traumatic brain injury (TBI). The adjuster for the self-insured employer referred this challenging workers’ compensation claim to Independent Life. The Case The injured worker spent the last two years in and out of facilities stacking up costly medical...

Qualified Settlement Funds Since it was founded in 2000, the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) has consistently offered its expanding membership high quality educational programs. Even prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, under President Joseph DiGangi’s leadership, SSP began utilizing online webinars as an effective learning tool for SSP members to supplement its annual educational conference. It should not surprise...

Revisiting the Grillo Case

Revisiting the Grillo Case The Christina Grillo medical malpractice case reached a $2,500,000 settlement in Texas in 1990 – thirty years ago. Why is the case still important today? And why, like two other historical industry events which occurred in 1990 (the Uniform Periodic Payment of Judgments Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act),  is it worth revisiting? Most structured...

Case Study: Wrongful Termination

Case Study: Wrongful Termination A 50-year-old black male truck driver filed a wrongful termination and discrimination case against his employer citing the reasons for his firing were unlawful. In addition, his employer, the trucking company, attempted to classify him as a 1099 independent contractor when he should have been classified as a W-2 employee.  ...

Case Study: Medical Malpractice

Medical Malpractice A regional hospital was handling a challenging medical malpractice claim involving a child diagnosed with cerebral palsy, epilepsy and significant developmental delays. Due to the nature of the claim, the life expectancy, medical cost projections, and valuation ranges were each hotly contested items. The Challenge As a result of years of low interest...

Uniform Periodic Payments of Judgments Act: Conclusion

Uniform Periodic Payments of Judgments Act: Conclusion In retrospect, the failure of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) to support the Uniform Periodic Payment of Judgments Act (“Uniform Act”) in 1990 can be viewed as a critical turning point in structured settlement history. Although enactment of the Uniform Act in the early 1990s would have required a sustained commitment...

Celebrating 30 Years of the ADA

July 26 marks the 30th anniversary of the enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). This legislative anniversary should be recognized and remembered as an important historic milestone among structured settlement and settlement planning professionals who advise personal injury victims and their families. The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on...

Considering the Uniform Periodic Payment of Judgments Act: Part II

For the vast majority of the 300 plus members of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) who attended the two-day NSSTA-sponsored conference in the Fall of 1990 to learn about “Uniform Periodic Payment of Judgments Act”(“Uniform Act” ), almost all of whom were defense brokers and life company representatives, the potential advantages and benefits of the...

Considering the Uniform Periodic Payment of Judgments Act: Part I

How different might the structured settlement market be today if the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) had endorsed and actively promoted the “Uniform Periodic Payment of Judgments Act” (Uniform Act) beginning in 1990? In retrospect, NSSTA’s failure to support the Uniform Act in 1990 can be viewed as a critical turning point in structured settlement history....

Revisiting Periodic Payment Judgments

Revisiting Periodic Payment Judgments State periodic payment of judgment statutes originated in the United States as part of the tort reform movements of the 1970s and 1980s, some of which predate the Periodic Payment Settlement Act of 1981 ultimately establishing the federal income tax foundation for structured settlements. Though rarely studied today in industry educational...

Free Download: Attorney Fee Checklist

Attorney Fee Checklist Plaintiff attorneys, this blog post is for you. You take care of your clients, but who’s taking care of your business? Believe it or not, a structured settlement can actually help both you and your client. Attorneys may think of structured settlements as an outdated or unfamiliar settlement technique and most plaintiffs’...

Structured Settlements for Minors

Structured Settlements for Minors When a personal injury case involves a minor, structured settlements are frequently considered the best choice for a settlement option compared with other alternatives such as a trust account managed by a bank or investment consultant or a “court-protected” account both of which are typically released to the child at age...

Reconfirming the Case for Structured Settlements

The Wall Street Journal published an article on June 12, 2020 highlighting a fundamental reason why structured settlements are more appropriate for many personal injury plaintiffs than alternative stock market investments. [Note: The Wall Street Journal requires a subscription for access to this article.] Titled “‘Volatility Is Everywhere’: The Market Tactic That’s Driving Stocks Haywire” and...

Misconceptions Attorneys Have About Structured Settlements

Misconceptions Attorneys Have About Structured Settlements Thank you for your interest in our e-book. Our goal is to help dispel any misconceptions attorneys may have about structured settlements, their benefits to plaintiffs, and their long-term value to attorneys themselves. Attorneys may think of structured settlements as an outdated or unfamiliar settlement technique and most plaintiffs’...

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Structured Settlement Market

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Structured Settlement Market How has the Impact of COVID-19 pandemic impacted the structured settlement market to date and what impact will it have in the future? Those issues were addressed, directly and indirectly, last week in separate forums featuring two Independent Life executives: Chairman Michael Upchurch and Senior Vice President of...

A Settlement Planning “Commencement”

A Settlement Planning “Commencement” During the past month, despite the cancellation of almost all in-person graduation ceremonies, the internet has been filled with virtual commencement speeches for the Class of 2020. Although most of these online orations have some general applicability, none seem particularly relevant to structured settlement graduates. And perhaps for good reason: there are no...

Case Study: Rated Ages

Independent Life recently had the opportunity to play a critical role in the resolution of a complex claim that had been going on for over 6 years. Overview: Hector, a 40-year old construction worker, fell 30 feet from the roof of a warehouse and suffered severe brain and spinal cord injuries.  The accident has left...

Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments Book Release 67

Since it was first published in 1986, “Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments” (S2P2J), has provided structured settlement stakeholders with an authoritative reference guide, consisting of 16 chapters with extensive footnotes and Appendix documents, to help them understand historical development as well as current issues and fashion settlements and judgments utilizing periodic payments. Both the National Structured Settlement...

What’s the Difference Between Qualified vs. Non-Qualified Settlements?

What is the difference between a “qualified” structured settlement and a “non-qualified” structured settlement? When describing a structured settlement, the terms “qualified” and “non-qualified” generally refer to “assignments” and IRC Section 130. The primary tax difference, from a structured settlement recipient’s perspective, is that “qualified” structured settlement periodic payments are excluded from income tax whereas...

5 Things Every Attorney Should Know About Structuring Attorney Fees

5 Things Every Attorney Should Know About Structuring Attorney Fees Most plaintiff attorneys have a fundamental understanding about structured settlements and the benefits structured settlements can provide to their clients. Many plaintiff attorneys, however, are less familiar with potential advantages structured fees can offer for their own financial and retirement planning. Here are five things every attorney should know about structuring...

3 Tips for Preparing a Mediation involving Structured Settlements

3 Tips for Preparing a Mediation involving Structured Settlements From a structured settlement perspective, whenever a plaintiff attorney is preparing for a mediation involving various tort and non-tort case, the attorney should address the following questions:  Have I advised my client about structured settlements and provided my client with adequate resources to allow my client to express an informed...

3 Tips for Preparing a Mediation involving Structured Settlements

3 Tips for Preparing a Mediation involving Structured Settlements From a structured settlement perspective, whenever a plaintiff attorney is preparing for a mediation involving various tort and non-tort case, the attorney should address the following questions:  Have I advised my client about structured settlements and provided my client with adequate resources to allow my client to express an informed...

An Analysis of the Revised NAIC Annuity Suitability Regulation

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) has recently voted to update its Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation (Model Number 275). States can use NAIC Model Regulations when developing their own laws but have no requirement to do so. Many states previously enacted laws based upon the NAIC’s original 2010 Model Suitability Regulation and most states are expected to quickly amend their laws to correspond with the...

An Analysis of the Updated ABLE POMS Guidance

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has published updated Program Operation Manual System (POMS) guidance for Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) accounts effective March 13, 2020. POMS represent a primary source of information used by Social Security employees to process claims for Social Security benefits. The Direct Funding Debate  Unfortunately, the updated POMS neither mention structured settlements nor clarify the “direct funding debate”. As...

An Analysis of the Revised NAIC Annuity Suitability Regulation

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) has recently voted to update its Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation (Model Number 275). States can use NAIC Model Regulations when developing their own laws but have no requirement to do so. Many states previously enacted laws based upon the NAIC’s original 2010 Model Suitability Regulation and most states are expected to quickly amend their laws to correspond with the...

What is a Structured Settlement Consultant and Why Do You Need One?

What is a Structured Settlement Consultant and Why Do You Need One? According to the National Structured Settlement Trade Association, “Structured settlement consultants are available to discuss your needs and hopes for resuming your life after your injury. They will educate you about what a structured settlement is and if it is a suitable solution to meet your...

Independent Life COVID-19 Response

We recognize that you may be experiencing significant changes in your everyday life while thinking through the full impact of COVID-19 on you, your family, and your business.  To that end, we wanted to provide the following information about Independent Life. Operations For the safety of our employees, we have taken precautions and activated our...

Book Review: What You Can Expect When Expecting a Settlement

Book Review: What You Can Expect When Expecting a Settlement Assuming you are a professional structured settlement consultant and/or settlement planner, what is the first advice you generally offer to your clients who are expecting a financial settlement? Traci Kaas, an Independent Life agent, who identifies herself professionally as a Certified Financial Transitionist (CeFT), a...

What Do Smart Phones Have in Common with Structured Settlements?

What Do Smart Phones Have in Common with Structured Settlements? If a future business historian were to make an analogy between the personal injury settlement planning market in 2030 and the smart phone market in 2020, which product will structured settlement annuities resemble more – the BlackBerry or the iPhone? When Chinese electronics company TCL Communication announced this week that...

What is a Qualified Settlement Fund?

What is a Qualified Settlement Fund? IRC 468B Qualified Settlement Funds (QSFs) provide plaintiff attorneys and their clients with important advantages as a settlement technique for complex personal injury cases. Almost always utilized in mass tort cases, QSFs are also applicable to, and represent the preferred method for settling, many complex single event tort cases....

Responsibilities of Plaintiff Counsel in Structured Settlements

Responsibilities of Plaintiff Counsel in Structured Settlements As the Mraz case demonstrates, even the most successful and sophisticated trial attorneys aren’t always familiar enough with structured settlement and settlement planning to identify and achieve a “best interest” result for their client. Similarly, the Grillo case points out the potential legal liability for plaintiff attorneys who do not...

AAJ Winter Convention 2020

AAJ Winter Convention 2020 The 2020 conference schedule has now begun! This week the Independent Life team is exhibiting at the American Association for Justice (AAJ) 2020 Winter Convention in New Orleans. While we are the only structured settlement annuity provider attending, four of our partner agencies will also be exhibiting: Forge Consulting Milestone Consulting Robert W....

Industry Education and Technology

Industry Education and Technology None of the 2019 educational conferences sponsored by the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) included any presentations about technology issues. This omission appears more the rule than the exception for recent NSSTA educational conferences. By comparison, the 2019 Annual Conference of the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) featured a presentation...

Industry Education, Financial Products and Concepts

Industry Education, Financial Products and Concepts Should the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA), and its members, be interested in education programs about financial planning products and concepts other than structured settlement annuities – and, if so, why? Addressing this question is part of a series of articles evaluating whether NSSTA needs to re-think and re-design its...

Industry Education and Ethics

Industry Education and Ethics The National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) Code of Ethics, more formally referred to as NSSTA’s “Statement of Ethics and Professional Responsibility” is prominently featured on NSSTA’s website. NSSTA Code of Ethics In addition to a Preamble, which makes clear the Code’s applicability of its “guiding principles” to NSSTA members and their...

Industry Education and Taxation

Industry Education and Taxation Potential tax benefits represent both a fundamental advantage of structured settlements and a rationale for considering structured settlement annuities as part of almost any personal injury settlement plan. Virtually every member of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) and the Society of Settlement Planners (SSP) has a basic understanding of the statutory...

Industry Education and Public Benefits

Industry Education and Public Benefits From a structured settlement perspective, a key settlement planning priority is determining how best to integrate structured settlement annuities into a settlement plan to qualify or maintain government benefits – especially “means tested” government benefits. Continuing a series of articles evaluating whether the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) needs to re-think...

Industry Education, Federal Laws and Regulations

Industry Education, Federal Laws and Regulations Since its formation more than 25 years ago, one of the defining characteristics of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) has been its ability to “punch above its weight” politically. This core competency began with a group of dedicated consultants led by Len Blonder (among others) who retained...

Industry Education and Stakeholder Perspectives

Industry Education and Stakeholder Perspectives Following the Spring 2019 National Structured Settlement Trade Association Annual Conference, The Chronicle promised a series of articles to evaluate whether NSSTA needed to re-think and re-design its educational programming and educational marketing to strategically position structured settlement annuities as the core product within personal injury settlement planning. This article asks: “whether, how and to...

Historical Developments Structured Settlements: Market Foundation

Historical Developments Structured Settlements: Market Foundation This is the second article (Part II) in a four part series of articles that explore the timeline of historical developments that highlight key events for the structured settlement market. Period One – Industry Formation Period Two – Market Foundation Period Three – Conflict, Growth, Transition Period Four – Industry...

Historical Developments Structured Settlements: Industry Formation

Historical Developments Structured Settlements: Industry Formation This is the introduction and part I for a timeline of historical developments that highlight key events for the structured settlement market. Period One – Industry Formation Period Two – Market Foundation Period Three – Conflict, Growth, Transition Period Four – Industry Reset and Rebuild PERIOD ONE – INDUSTRY...

Developments in Structured Settlements: Conflict, Growth, Transition

Developments in Structured Settlements: Conflict, Growth, Transition This is the third article (Part III) in a four part series of articles that explore the timeline of historical developments that highlight key events for the structured settlement market. Period One – Industry Formation Period Two – Market Foundation Period Three – Conflict, Growth, Transition Period Four –...

Historic Developments Structured Settlements: Industry Reset & Rebuild

Historic Developments Structured Settlements: Industry Reset & Rebuild This is the fourth and final article (Part IV) in a four part series of articles that explore the timeline of historical developments that highlight key events for the structured settlement market. Period One – Industry Formation Period Two – Market Foundation Period Three – Conflict, Growth, Transition...

Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgement Book Release 66

Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgement Book Release 66 Since it was first published in 1986, “Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments” (S2P2J), has provided structured settlement stakeholders with an authoritative reference guide, consisting of 16 chapters with extensive footnotes and Appendix documents, to help them understand issues and fashion settlements and judgments utilizing periodic...

An Assessment of the Current Education for Settlement Planning

An Assessment of the Current Education for Settlement Planning Following the Spring 2019 National Structured Settlement Trade Association Annual Conference, The Chronicle promised a series of blog posts to evaluate whether NSSTA needed to re-think and re-design its educational programming and educational marketing to strategically position structured settlement annuities as the core product within personal injury settlement planning. An introductory...

NAMSAP 2019 Annual Conference Overview

NAMSAP 2019 Annual Conference Overview From Independent Life’s perspective as a sponsor and exhibitor, the 2019 National Alliance of Medicare Set-Aside Professionals Annual Conference hosted September 18-20 in Baltimore surpassed its goals, objectives and expectations: As the primary annual meeting of Medicare Set-Aside (MSA) and Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) knowledge resources, NAMSAP’s conference represents an extensive, valuable market...

The Mraz Case

The Mraz Case Author Patrick Hindert recently spoke with Mark Wahlstrom on the Speaking of Justice podcast regarding this case, listen to the audio here.  For many attorneys who represent personal injury plaintiffs, their primary desire is to use their expertise to obtain the largest possible amount of compensation for their client. The best personal injury plaintiff’s attorneys are outstanding litigators who...

A Market Analysis of Structured Settlement Educational Programs

A Market Analysis of Structured Settlement Educational Programs Following the Spring 2019 National Structured Settlement Trade Association Annual Conference, The Chronicle promised a series of articles to evaluate whether NSSTA needed to re-think and re-design its educational programming and educational marketing to strategically position structured settlement annuities as the core product within personal injury settlement planning. This article launches that...

Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organizations (NRSRO) Ratings

Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organizations (NRSRO) Ratings Although the stakeholders within the structured settlement market traditionally have focused primarily on A.M. Best when evaluating the potential credit risk of annuity providers,leading regulators including the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) utilize their own “category” of rating agencies to...

Settlement Trusts & Structured Settlements

Settlement Trusts & Structured Settlements One of the defining differences between the “Claim Management” and the “Settlement Planning” structured settlement business models (in general) is how they view trusts and trustees. In the traditional Claim Management structured settlement model, trusts are viewed as competitive products and trustees are viewed as competitors. The sale is binary:...

What is Settlement Planning?

What is Settlement Planning? Settlement planning, a term previously avoided by the National Structured Settlement Trade Organization (NSSTA), was a buzz word at the 2019 NSSTA Annual Meeting, which featured an educational panel dedicated to the topic.So, as NSSTA begins “to re-think and re-design its educational programming and marketing to strategically position structured settlements as the core product...

IL Launches ‘The Chronicle’

IL Launches ‘The Chronicle’ Welcome to “The Structured Structured Settlement Chronicle”, (the Chronicle) an Independent Life (IL) website resource that will feature regularly updated news coverage, with some editorial commentary, of industry events and developments which we view as valuable to structured settlement and personal injury settlement planning professionals and other stakeholders. The primary focus...

Settlement Trusts + Structured Settlements = Settlement Planning?

Settlement Trusts + Structured Settlements = Settlement Planning? Once considered a competitive product, most structured settlement professionals and settlement planners now view settlement trusts as an essential and complementary part of their personal injury settlement solutions.Trusts, which are legal entities and can be revocable or irrevocable, can have many purposes including wealth accumulation, spendthrift protection,...

Drinker Biddle Structured Settlement and Annuities Roundtable

Drinker Biddle Structured Settlement and Annuities Roundtable The Drinker Biddle law firm Structured Settlement and Annuity Team introduced a new educational model last week when it hosted a one-day, invitation-only Structured Settlement and Annuities Roundtable at its Philadelphia office. Drinker Biddle promoted the roundtable as “three substantive sessions on pressing issues facing the structured settlement industry and its participants,...

The Importance of Public Policy for Structured Settlements

What is public policy and why is it important for structured settlements? One definition of public policy is “the broad area of government laws, regulations, court decisions, and local ordinances as enacted by federal, state, and local governments.” That comprehensive definition encompasses all federal and state laws, regulations and court decisions that have impacted structured settlements since...

Reviewing Structured Settlement Educational Programs – Spring 2019

Reviewing Structured Settlement Educational Programs – Spring 2019 Does the National Structured Settlements Trade Association (NSSTA) need to re-think and re-design its educational programming and educational marketing to strategically position structured settlements as the core product within personal injury settlement planning? Or is NSSTA already doing so? We introduced  these questions in a prior Independent Life Chronicle blog post.  Based on...

Benefits of Structured Settlements

Benefits of Structured Settlements Today in the context of industry change and the need for industry growth, what exactly are the benefits of structured settlements? And will marketing those benefits be enough to ensure the future success of the National Structured Settlements Trade Association (NSSTA) and the structured settlement market? NSSTA President Michelle Caine highlighted the strategic importance of these...

Knowledge: A Strategic Factor in Structured Settlement Growth

Knowledge: A Strategic Factor in Structured Settlement Growth He has demonstrated “how knowledge can function as a driver of long-term economic growth” – The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, in awarding Paul Romer a 2018 Nobel Prize in Economics. —————- During the most recent annual meeting of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA), which occurred...

Why the Market Needed a New Non-Qualified Structured Settlement Plan

Why the Market Needed a New Non-Qualified Structured Settlement Plan Structured settlements are typically associated with physical injury, sickness, wrongful death or workers’ compensation claims. In these cases, the tax code allows the claimant to receive income tax free compensation for their injuries, spread over time, from a trusted life insurance company via a §130(c) qualified assignment but...

KBRA Affirms Rating for Independent Life Insurance Company

KBRA Affirms Rating for Independent Life Insurance Company NEW YORK (May 2, 2019) – Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) affirms the insurance financial strength rating (IFSR) of A- for Independent Life Insurance Company (Independent Life), a Texas-domiciled life insurance company that focuses exclusively on the structured settlement market.Independent Life Insurance Company is the underwriter within...

ABLE Accounts: The Direct Funding Debate

ABLE Accounts: The Direct Funding Debate Without more specific legal authority, many plaintiff attorneys, special needs attorneys and settlement planning professionals may be unwilling to recommend direct funding of ABLE accounts with structured settlements because of the risk their disabled client might lose his or her means-tested government benefits. In this article, we’ll explore the current arguments for and...

Are ABLE Accounts a Growth Opportunity for Structured Settlements

Are ABLE Accounts a Growth Opportunity for Structured Settlements The ABLE Act together with the state ABLE programs now offer settlement and judgment payees an important new solution (ABLE Accounts) for saving and accumulating money while preserving eligibility for needs-based government benefits and allowing direct access by the owner/beneficiary. Structured settlement annuities appear to represent an ideal funding...

What is the ABLE Act?

What is the ABLE Act? Known as the “Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014,” the ABLE Act, which created IRC Section 529A, was signed into law with bipartisan political support. It’s stated intent: “(1) To encourage and assist individuals and families in saving private funds for the purpose of supporting individuals with disabilities to maintain...

What are ABLE Accounts?

  ABLE accounts, similar to special needs trusts and pooled trusts, allow qualifying persons with disabilities, including personal injury victims, to save money without jeopardizing their eligibility for means-tested public benefits.  Means-tested public benefit programs generally impose income and resource limitations. For example, to qualify and remain eligible for Social Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid,...

Independent Life Now Offering Non-Qualified Structured Settlements

Independent Life Now Offering Non-Qualified Structured Settlements DALLAS – (April 15, 2019) – Independent Life Insurance Company (Independent Life), the first annuity provider to focus solely on the structured settlement market, is delivering on its promise to introduce innovative solutions to the marketplace. The Texas-based company announced it will now offer annuities for non-qualified structured settlements to fill a gap...

Say Hello to our New NSSTA Committee Members!

Say Hello to our New NSSTA Committee Members! Since 1985, the National Structured Settlements Trade Association has been the leading voice of the structured settlement industry. Independent Life recognizes the impact NSSTA has on our industry and as new members, we are excited to contribute to and help further the NSSTA mission “to promote the establishment and preservation of structured...

Introducing the Payee Protection Policy

Introducing the Payee Protection Policy Independent Life is proud to introduce the structured settlement industry’s first Payee Protection Policy. This new offering is directly in line with our company’s mission to provide trustworthy, competitive and innovative annuity products that professional structured settlement consultants can easily integrate with other financial products and governmental benefits to produce...

CMS WCMSA Reference Guide Version 2-9

CMS WCMSA Reference Guide Version 2-9 Workers’ Compensation Medicare Set-Aside Arrangements (WCMSAs) have become an important submarket for structured settlement annuities. Arguably, the primary reason has been a significant cost advantage CMS has provided for structured settlement annuities (perhaps unintentionally) compared with lump sums. The basis for the cost advantage CMS has provided to structured settlement annuities results from the...

Ezell v. Lexington

Ezell v. Lexington Note: this article was edited on June 16, 2019 to correct an earlier mistake and to provide an important update. The 1st Circuit Court of Appeals has dismissed the Plaintiffs’ Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts.  Release 66 of “Structured Settlements and Periodic Payment Judgments” will provide additional details...

2019 Payee Protection Policy Annual Report

2019 Payee Protection Policy Annual Report Independent Life developed and launched the first Payee Protection Policy in the structured settlement industry on February 24, 2019 with the mission of protecting payees from any and all proposed transfer petitions we view as unfair to our payees. As part of that Policy, when a petition is filed...

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report – Part 5

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report – Part 5 This is the final post of a five part series regarding the 2018 Structured Settlement Report – be sure to read parts I, II, III and IV. Because of its significance for the structured settlement and personal injury settlement planning markets, The Chronicle is devoting a five-part series of articles to the...

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report – Part 3

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report – Part 3 This is part three of a five part series regarding the 2018 Structured Settlement Report – be sure to read parts I, II, IV and V. Parts 1 and 2 of The Chronicle’s Series analyzing Melissa Price’s 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report highlighted both the positive and the concerning news for NSSTA and...

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report– Part 2

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report– Part 2 This is part two of a five part series regarding the 2018 Structured Settlement Report – be sure to read parts I, III, IV and V. Part 1 of The Chronicle’s series analyzing the 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report, recently published and distributed by Melissa Price, Ringler’s Chief Strategy and Business Development Officer,...

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report – Part 4

The 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report – Part 4 This is part four of a five part series regarding the 2018 Structured Settlement Report – be sure to read parts I, II, III and V. Melissa Price’s 2018 Structured Settlement Production Report, distributed recently to industry participants, highlighted both positive and concerning news for NSSTA and the structured settlement market. The...

“How” and “Where” to Think about the Future

“How” and “Where” to Think about the Future The Chronicle’s introductory article highlighted a series of developments that have dramatically changed the structured settlement market.  It further opined that many traditional structured settlement participants have still not learned how to transition and/or adapt their business models and practices to these recent and ongoing market changes....

Independent Life Distributes Book Subscriptions

Independent Life Distributes Book Subscriptions The United States structured settlement market has been in existence for more than 40 years and continues to expand its scope, complexity and importance within the context of both claim management and personal injury settlement planning. When structured settlements were first introduced in the United States in the late 1970s, they...

Independent Assignment Company Announces Contract with ALM Media

Relationship will Feature Product Workshop at America’s Claims Event (ACE) Conference and Distribution of Online Structured Settlement Legal Textbook DALLAS – (May 15, 2018) – Company officials today announced that Independent Assignment Company (IAC) will contract with ALM Media to help promote increased educational awareness of the enhanced value of structured settlements in the current economic...

Independent Insurance Group Announces Launch

First Annuity Provider to Focus Exclusively on Structured Settlements for Personal Injury Victims DALLAS – (April 30, 2018) – Company officials today announced the launch of the Independent family of companies including subsidiary affiliates Independent Life Insurance Company and Independent Assignment Company. Independent Life will be the first annuity provider to focus solely on the structured...