Using a rated age can help to produce a
benefit stream to reflect the future costs
of medicals and wages at a cost we cannot
Claims departments need a reminder.
Structured settlement consultants are a
no-cost resource that your claims team
needs to leverage. What other expert is
available to you at no cost? These consultants, who are paid a commission from
the life insurance company that issues
the structured annuity, offer expertise in
quantifying damages and developing negotiation strategies. They can also handle
the settlement paperwork.
does not allow a settlement that shifts future medical costs from a defendant or its
insurer to Medicare or to the taxpayer.
Medicare’s interests must be protected
in any settlement involving a qualified
Medicare beneficiary. The Medicare Set-
Aside (MSA) is an insurance industry
accepted and Medicare’s recommended
method to protect Medicare’s interests
and allow settlement of workers’ com-
pensation claims. I have also seen set-
asides used in the settlement of certain
liability claims involving future medicals.
settlements | p. 31
When To Consider ‘Structure’
“What types of cases are best-suited
for structured settlements?” is a question
that inevitably arises. One answer is cases
involving minors and those with brain
damage. These are obvious ones, because
the court may insist on a structured settlement as a condition of the settlement.
Beyond that, a claims professional
should look at a structured settlement
when confronted with a case where the
demand includes future damages. In
addition, claims should focus on cases
involving total disability or when a future payout is likely to be greater than
$500,000. We should include that structures are utilized on cases of all sizes, with
structures as low as $15,000.
application in Workers’ Comp
Nowhere in claims is a structured settlement a more obvious win-win negotiating tool than with workers’ compensation losses. Start with the nature of most
state workers’ compensation systems.
Typically, an insurer does not have to settle and can elect to pay the claim as mandated by statute and schedules that may
or may not fit the needs of the workers’
compensation claimant. That said, most
workers’ compensation carriers prefer to
settle claims. Capping medical inflation
and the future unknown clearly carries a
benefit for the insurer. Structured settlements provide a flexible tool to settle such
Today, liability and workers’ compensation carriers are required to report certain
damage payments to Medicare, which