Structured Settlement calculators are online tools used to determine the amount of money that a claimant of a structured settlement would receive in exchange for a lump sum award from a court or an insurance company. These online calculators take the basic information found in a claimant’s structured settlement claim and convert it to an easy to understand value. This value is then used to calculate future annuity payments and other financial assumptions. However, many people wonder if using these calculators is legal. The following is legal advice regarding the use of a structured settlement calculator.
In general, there is no limit on the number of times that you can input information into a structured settlement calculator. In most cases, you will need to know the amount of each structured settlement payment that will be received, date of settlement payment and the amount of each installment that will be made over the course of a certain amount of time (the years, month or quarter). Generally speaking, all of the information that you would need to run this type of calculation is required to be true and accurate. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, you may not be able to determine an interest rate that is below zero until after negotiating with your financial institution.
If you use a structured settlement calculator that allows you to enter more than one lump sum payment, you must provide the same information for each of those payments. Otherwise, you will get an incorrect future payment amount and will not be able to determine if the remaining lump sum settlements will meet your financial needs. Additionally, you should remember not to change any information on a structured settlement calculator once you have made your initial submission. If you enter new information on a later date, you risk making an error in the calculation. It is best to conduct this type of information processing with the assistance of an attorney or other experienced professional.
While using a structured settlement calculator can be very useful for determining the payout amounts of your annuity and other plans, it does not offer any advice on how to resolve disputes with insurance companies. Such issues must be resolved between you and the insurance company. Do not use the calculator to try to negotiate a lesser payout amount if the final amount you receive from your insurance company is substantially less than the lump sum payments you had hoped to receive. You may also want to seek legal counsel before taking any steps to settle your claims with your insurance carrier.
If you want to use a structured settlement calculator to estimate future payout amounts, you must provide the same information for all future payments that will be received. Otherwise, you will obtain an incorrect present value of your settlement; and, therefore, an inaccurate future value of your settlement. Present value of a settlement is simply the current value of your settlement after all associated costs have been allocated. However, you will still receive the total amount of your settlement, including any applicable charges. The future value of a settlement is the amount you actually will receive in a settlement when all associated costs are factored in.
One common example of the use of a structured settlement calculator is to help determine whether a wrongful death claim will cover expenses that accrue up front and which must be paid upon the settlement of the victim. Some individuals try to circumvent the system by obtaining a large lump sum and paying their bills immediately. However, such a course of action can open the door to a long litigation process that takes advantage of the financial constraints most people are facing today. In such circumstances, individuals should consult an attorney who has experience dealing with these types of lawsuits. In many instances, the attorney can determine the proper way to calculate damages in order to receive the maximum benefits. If you are faced with a situation that requires you to determine the value of a settlement, be sure to consult an attorney well versed in these types of cases.