Maryland Law: Selling Structured Settlement Payments

If you are considering selling your future structured settlement payments for an immediate lump sum in Maryland, it's important to understand the laws surrounding this type of transfer. In addition to federal law, 49 states have their own laws that govern the process of transferring the rights of a structured settlement annuity.

Maryland Structured Settlement Law

In Maryland, the law surrounding the transfer of rights to future structured settlement payments is Maryland Courts and Judicial Proceedings Section 5-1101.

(b) Payments to transferee authorized in certain circumstances. --A structured settlement obligor or annuity issuer may not make any payment directly or indirectly to a transferee of structured settlement payment rights unless the transfer is authorized in an order of a court based on express findings that:

(1) The transfer is necessary, reasonable, and appropriate and in the best interest of the payee, taking into account the welfare and support of the payee's dependents;

(2) The financial terms of the transfer agreement are fair to all parties, taking into account:

(i) The difference between the amount payable to the payee and the discounted present value of the payments to be transferred; and

(ii) The discount rate applicable to the transfer;

(3) The payee received independent professional advice concerning the proposed transfer; and

(4) At least 10 days before the date on which the payee signed the transfer agreement, the transferee provided to the payee a separate disclosure statement, in at least 14 point boldface type, that states:

(i) The amounts and due dates of the structured settlement payments to be transferred;

(ii) The aggregate amount of the payments to be transferred;

(iii) The discounted present value of the payments to be transferred;

(iv) The amount payable to the payee in exchange for the payments to be transferred;

(v) An itemized listing of all brokers' commissions, service charges, application fees, processing fees, closing costs, filing fees, administrative fees, notary fees, and other charges payable by the payee or deductible from the gross amount otherwise payable to the payee, except attorney's fees and related disbursements;

(vi) The transferee's best estimate of the amount of any attorney's fees and disbursements payable by the payee or deductible from the gross amount otherwise payable to the payee;

(vii) The net amount payable to the payee after deduction of all commissions, fees, costs, expenses, and charges described in items (v) and (vi) of this item;

(viii) The discount rate applicable to the transfer, which shall be disclosed in the following statement: "Based on the net amount that you will receive from us and the amounts and timing of the structured settlement payments that you are transferring to us, you will, in effect, be paying interest to us at a rate of percent per year.";

(ix) The amount of any penalty or liquidated damages payable by the payee in the event of any breach of the transfer agreement by the payee; and 

(x) A statement that the payee has the right to cancel the transfer agreement, without penalty or further obligation, at any time before the transfer is authorized by a court under this subtitle.   

Click here to read the full Maryland law.

Federal Structured Settlement Law

To sell your future structured settlement payments, you'll need to comply with both state and federal law. These laws are in place to protect you.

In 2001, Congress enacted the Victims of Terrorism Relief Act, which includes a provision relating to structured settlement factoring transactions (26 U.S. Code § 5891). This provision imposes a high excise tax on structured settlement factoring transactions unless the transactions are “approved in advance in a qualified order.” The Act defines a qualified order, and it requires that the order be issued “under the authority of an applicable State statute by an applicable State Court.”  Since then, 49 states and the District of Columbia have enacted state statutes setting for the procedures for court approval of structured settlement factoring transactions.

Qualified order. --For purposes of this section, the term “qualified order” means a final order, judgment, or decree which--

(A)  finds that the transfer described in paragraph (1)--

(i)  does not contravene any Federal or State statute or the order of any court or responsible administrative authority, and

(ii)  is in the best interest of the payee, taking into account the welfare and support of the payee's dependents, and

(B)  is issued--

(i)  under the authority of an applicable State statute by an applicable State court, or

(ii)  by the responsible administrative authority (if any) which has exclusive jurisdiction over the underlying action or proceeding which was resolved by means of the structured settlement.

26 U.S. Code § 5891 also offers some helpful definitions and other rules for selling structured settlement rights. Read the full law here.

We have a few articles that might be helpful if you are considering selling your structured settlement payments:

Transferring the rights to your future payments is permanent, and it's not the best choice for everyone. We encourage you to speak with a financial expert about your asset and to weigh all your options if you are in need of immediate cash.

CrowFly is committed to creating a positive experience that is built on trust, accessibility, and transparency for people who have structured settlements. For more information, contact CrowFly at 833-CROWFLY, email info@crowfly.com, or get started with a structured settlement quote.