If you have suffered a permanent disability on the job in California, or you have been grief stricken by the sudden loss of an immediate family member under such circumstances, you may be wondering what is best regarding trying to get the financial help you need in recovery.
If your loved one died in a workplace accident, there is obviously no adequate way to replace your loss. You probably have difficulty just thinking beyond your grief and sorrow. In addition to the emotional trauma of your situation, you may be facing serious financial challenges in the aftermath of your loved one's tragic death. Especially if this particular family member was a major breadwinner in your home, you may be completely unprepared to meet unexpected costs and debt that have arisen since the accident took place.
If you yourself were severely injured on the job, you may be experiencing many of the same financial challenges as an immediate family member who has lost a loved one.
This may be a viable option
If your on-the-job injuries have rendered you unable to return to work, it is understandable you may be concerned with how you will make ends meet as time goes on. You may already be familiar with the basics of workers' compensation.
Your employer, like most others, probably purchased insurance meant to provide benefits to workers in situations like yours in order to cover medical bills and replace lost wages during recovery.
You may not be as familiar, however, with the term, "structured settlement," but if you are permanently disabled, or you have suffered the untimely death of an immediate family member in a workplace accident, you may want to learn more about it.
Here are the main points:
- Structured settlements are often used in cases where it is unlikely that an employee will ever be able to return to work because of a workplace injury.
- Typically, a settlement is broken down into payments-perhaps for the rest of your life, if appropriate.
- Payments received through structured settlements are not considered taxable income.
- The amount each payment should represent part of your overall annuity plan and can be determined according to your particular needs.
- Approximately one third of those injured in workplace accidents utilize this option when settling a workers' compensation case.
The above list provides basic information regarding structured settlement plans as part of the workers' compensation process.
What are the benefits of choosing this option?
What works for someone else may not be the right choice for you. You'll likely want to seek clarification of state and federal laws, as well as skilled representation before determining how best to proceed to obtain the care and provisions you need to make the most of your recovery.
Others who have implemented a structured settlement plan cite the following as some of the potential benefits:
- Allows you exemption from income tax burden at both state and federal levels
- May allow you to sell some of your payments (Eligibility requirements apply.)
- Expedites the court process
- A highly customizable payment plan
- Often allows you the ability to cash-out and receive annuity as a lump sum
With appropriate guidance, you can choose a settlement plan that best aligns with your immediate and long-term recovery goals.
The system of obtaining the benefits to which you are entitled after being seriously injured or losing a loved one in a workplace accident is often quite complex. To simplify the process and protect your rights as an injured worker, you may request assistance from an experienced workers' compensation attorney at any time.