A Complete Guide to Protecting Your Personal Injury Settlement: The Financial First Aid Kit You Need
Personal injury proceedings can often feel like adding insult to injury, so it’s always a relief when you win the settlement you deserve. While gaining your compensation is exciting, it can also be a little bit nerve-wracking to determine how to protect your payment so that it’s there when you need it. Fortunately, there are a few things that you can do to ensure that your settlement is safe and sound.
If you’re looking to protect your personal injury settlement, follow the steps for success below.
Partner with a personal injury lawyer
The law is a little tricky to navigate on your own, which is why you should partner with a personal injury law firm that knows the law backward and forwards and can help you to make the most out of your settlement.
Working with a personal injury lawyer helps you relax knowing that any legal matters will be handled professionally by someone who knows what they’re doing. If you attempt to go it alone, you can certainly stand to lose a lot more money in the long run.
Additionally, experienced personal injury law firms save you time and reduce your stress throughout the entire process. Partnering with a great personal injury lawyer is one of the most important things you can do to ensure that your settlement is safe and that the whole process runs smoothly.
Keep thorough files on everything
You should always keep accurate files on everything, just in case you have to produce paperwork or any documentation down the road. Keep both paper and electronic copies of all of the details of your settlement. However, don’t worry if you don’t have electronic versions of your settlement documents from the initial agreement. You can always take pictures with your phone and email them to yourself.
It’s essential to keep track of every financial interaction that may have occurred during your settlement. Document all deposits, expenses, and fees you incur. Some people like to take this time to organize all of their finances and better handle their financial situation.
Having your financial house in order can have profound long-term benefits, not just concerning your settlement but for all future expenses and payments you receive.
Put your settlement on a prepaid card
If you don’t have great credit or have pending judgments from creditors, you should consider putting your settlement on a prepaid card. It will prevent creditors from going after your payment and protect it more than your bank account can. You can buy prepaid cards from many places, including big box stores like Walmart.
The key is to purchase a card not linked to your bank and only put your injury settlement on the card. You’ll want to keep this money separate from all of your other funds. Also, make sure that you keep a paper trail of your transactions with the card.
There are several reputable and good prepaid debit cards out there. Simply select the one that works best for you and your lifestyle.
Communicate with any of your creditors
Although it might be tempting to hide from our creditors, communication is the key to keeping your financial investments and personal injury settlement safe. If you have outstanding debt, try to set up a plan to pay it off with your creditors. Often, creditors are very open to payment plans because it means they will eventually recoup their money.
Sometimes, you can set up an arrangement to only pay off part of the balance that you owe. Talk to your creditors to see what you can do. Clearing your bad debt also allows you to build better credit for the future.
Put it into a separate account
If you don’t want to put your personal injury settlement on a prepaid debit card, you can always put it into a separate bank account. However, it’s imperative that you only use this bank account for your settlement. If you deposit any other funds into it, your creditors may use it as an excuse to garnish your payment as well. As always, keep any transactional receipts.
One of the biggest mistakes people make is assuming that their savings account is a safe place for their personal injury settlement. If your savings account is garnished or compromised, your personal injury settlement might vanish. Storing your payment safely is another reason you should partner with a personal injury attorney or law firm that can protect your assets.
Take these steps to protect your personal injury settlement and keep those funds for a rainy day. By partnering with a personal injury law firm that understands your situation and storing your confidential injury settlement in a safe place, you can ensure that you are covered for the long run and that you can access it whenever you need it.