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Definition of Viatical Settlement

Viatical Settlement Image 1

Viatical Settlement

A dictionary meaning for the word viatica is "the eucharist as given to a dying person or to one in danger of death". In the context of viatical settlement it means the selling of one's own life insurance policy to another in exchange for an immediate percentage of the death benefit. The person or in many cases, group of persons buying the rights to the policy have high expectation of the imminent death of the previous owner. The sooner the death of the previous owner, the higher the profit. Consumer knowledge about this subject is poor and little is known about the entities that fund the companies that purchase policies. People should be very careful when considering the sale of their policy, and they should remember a sale of their life insurance means some group of strangers now owns a contract on their life. If a senior finds it difficult to pay for an insurance policy it might be a better choice to request that current beneficiaries take over the burden of paying the premium. The practice selling personal life insurance policies common in the United States and is spilling over into Canada. It would appear to have a definite conflict with Canada's historical view of 'insurable interest'.



Related Terms:

Living Benefit

Some insurance companies include this benefit option at no cost to their policy holders. The insurer considers on a case to case basis, the need for insurance funds before death. If the insured can demonstrate a shortened life of less than two years and with some insurers one year, the insurer will consider releasing up to 50% or a maximum of $100,000 of the life insurance coverage held by the insured. Not all insurers offer this benefit for free. The need has resulted in specific stand alone living benefit/critical illness policies coming into existence. Look under "Different types of Life Insurance" for further information. You might have heard of "viatical settlements", the practice of seriously ill people selling the rights to their life insurance policies to third parties. This practice is common in the United States but has not caught on in Canada.


Structured Settlement

Historically, damages paid out during settlement of personal physical injury cases were distributed in the form of a lump-sum cash payment to the plaintiff. This windfall was intended to provide for a lifetime of medical and income needs. The claimant or his/her family was then forced into the position of becoming the manager of a large sum of money.
In an effort to create a more financially stable arrangement for the claimant, the Structured settlement was developed. A Structured settlement is an alternative to a lump sum cash payment in the resolution of personal physical injury, wrongful death, or workers’ compensation cases. The settlement usually consists of two components: an up-front cash payment to provide for immediate needs and a series of future periodic payments which are funded by the defendant’s purchase of one or more annuity policies. Those payors make payments directly to the claimant. In the unfortunate event of the claimant’s death, a guaranteed portion of the settlement may be directed to a beneficiary or his/her estate.
A Structured settlement is a guaranteed source of funds paid to the claimant or his/her family on a tax-free basis.


Living Will

This is a will which specifically expresses the testator's desire not to be kept alive on life support machines, should the occasion arise.


Accidental Death Benefit (ADB)

Coverage against accidental death usually payable in addition to base amount of coverage.


Automatic Benefits Payment

Automatic payment of moneys derived from a benefit.



Benefit

An instruction that pays a cash amount upon the occurrence of a specific event.


Benefit Value

The amount of cash payable on a benefit.


Viatical Settlement Image 1

Death Benefit

Amount paid on death of an insured.


Living Square Footage

See Square Footage, living


Square Footage, Living

The square footage in a home that is heated and/or cooled. The space occupied by two-story rooms and stairwells is counted once in the lower floor's square footage. living square footage does not include garages, bonus rooms, or porches unless otherwise noted.



 

 

 

 

 

 

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