Preparing For Your Day In Court
The last step before you can get your cash lump sum is talking to a judge who can approve the sale of your future structured settlement payments.
Appearing Before A Judge
After your paperwork has been filed and the court date is set, the last thing you need to do is meet with a judge and explain why you want to sell your future structured settlement payments. Every question you’ve answered and every form you’ve filled out leads to this moment.
What You Need For Your Court Date
Our attorneys will bring a copy of all the required paperwork to the courthouse. However, there are a few added details for you to take care of on your own:
Bring A Valid Photo ID
Courthouses have strict security. To get inside, you may need to have a photo ID that’s up to date. This includes a driver’s license, state ID, or passport.
To show the judge that you’re taking the transaction seriously and to make the best impression you can, be sure to dress professionally for the court date. Men should wear a suit or collared shirt and slacks. Women should wear a suit, a dress, or a nice blouse and slacks. The best way to prepare is to think of the court date like a job interview and dress to impress.
Have A Plan For Your Lump Sum
The judge will ask you why you want a lump sum so it’s a good idea to be prepared. Have something to show the judge that explains how you plan to spend the cash once you get it. For example, if you’re looking to pay off high-interest debt, bring copies of your statements. If you’re planning to start your own business, have your business plan ready and prepare a list of what you hope to buy with the lump sum.
Prepare A Budget
Some judges might ask you about your personal finances and if you understand how selling your future payments will affect them. Having a budget that lists your assets and expenses shows the judge that you’ve given the transaction thought and that you have a strong grasp of your finances.
Arrive to the Courthouse Early
The most important thing you need to bring to the court is yourself! Being prompt makes a good impression. Better yet, show up early since it might take you a while to find the room where your case will be heard. If you miss your hearing, the judge might reschedule it for days, weeks, or even months in the future.
Types of Questions the Judge Might Ask
After reviewing your paperwork and contract, the judge will often ask questions of both you and our attorney. In the weeks leading up to the court date, your account executive will go over the types of questions you can expect. Most questions are likely to fall into these main categories:
Terms and Conditions
The judge might go over the terms and conditions of the sale to make sure you understand what payments you’re selling to get your lump sum. This is detailed information we specified in your quote as well as in the disclosure statement you signed. If you have any questions about the transaction, be sure to ask your account executive in the weeks leading up to the court date.
When you sell your structured settlement payments, you’re exchanging your future payments for a lump sum of cash. Before approving the transaction, the judge might ask you questions about your budget to see if you’ve given thought to how the transaction will impact your finances. Having information prepared beforehand shows that you understand the choice you are making.
Plans for the Lump Sum
It’s your money and you should be able to use it when you need it. But before approving the transaction, a judge might ask how you plan to use the funds. Getting a large sum of cash all at once can change your life and the judge will want to see evidence that you’ve thought about how you’ll spend the money. If you are prepared with documents that explain your plans, this should be an easy question to answer.
Do I Need A Lawyer?
No one is on trial. Instead, you are asking the court to approve the sale of your future payments. This is a legal process. We will have an attorney in court to represent J.G. Wentworth in case the judge has any questions for us. You can ask our lawyer questions if you have them, but our lawyer is not your attorney and cannot answer any questions the judge asks you.
Now it's time to Test Your Knowledge
Don't worry, you've already got an A for participation. But if you're feeling up to the challenge you can test your knowledge of the information covered in this step.
Next steps What Happens Once the Judge Approves the Sale?
Each state has different guidelines and laws for selling structured settlement payments. One of the purposes of being in court is for the judge to make sure that the contract adheres to these laws. With more than 25 years of experience purchasing future payments, we are very confident that our agreements comply with the law.
After the judge approves the transaction our team can finalize all of the details so we can send you your lump sum. At this point you can sit back, relax, and wait for your cash.* J.G. Wentworth does not provide legal, tax, or financial advice, please consult with independent professionals for such advice.
How We’ll Pay You Your Lump Sum
After the judge approves the sale, all that’s left is for you to receive your lump sum. You can choose to receive a check or have funds deposited into your bank account.Begin Step 6