One of the most important decisions we must make as we get older is when to start receiving Social Security payouts.
According to research by United Income, a money management firm that provides financial advice to retirees (as reported in a recent Bloomberg article) 4 percent of retirees wait until they turn 70 to start receiving Social Security (and a bigger monthly check) while 70 percent start receiving Social Security checks before age 64 (and receive a considerably smaller monthly check). The decision when to start benefits should not be taken lightly. It can affect the financial wellbeing of individuals as they reach their 70s, 80s and beyond.
The same holds true when deciding how and when to receive a settlement payout. As with Social Security, a structured settlement (with annuities and government-backed securities as the underlying assets) offers the security and certainty of guaranteed lifelong payments. And much like Social Security, a structured settlement strategy must be created in advance so the injured party can be assured there will be enough funds to live comfortably now and later in life.
Structured Settlement Decisions
Once an injured party decides a structured settlement is the right way to go, key questions need to be answered, especially if long-term financial support must be factored into the structure’s creation:
- When should settlement payouts begin?
- Should a lump sum be distributed upfront to cover initial expenses?
- How should proceeds be paid – weekly, monthly or by another payment schedule?
- Should payments be less now and more later to cover future living and medical expenses?
- What approaches are necessary to ensure Medicare is not affected by a structured settlement?
There are all sorts of factors that come into play when deciding when to start collecting Social Security——health, finances, taxes, work status. Many of these same issues hold true when deciding how and when to receive settlement proceeds.
Feel free to contact me with any questions about structured settlements or if you would like to discuss structured settlement strategies