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Presents Adding, Building & Maintaining a Settlement Planning Practice With Kevin Urbatsch Sponsored by: October 1, 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "Presents Adding, Building & Maintaining a Settlement Planning Practice With Kevin Urbatsch Sponsored by: October 1, 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 Presents Adding, Building & Maintaining a Settlement Planning Practice With Kevin Urbatsch Sponsored by: October 1, 2014

2 What is Settlement Planning? Settlement Planning is a process that helps recipients of litigation settlement proceeds use those proceeds to achieve their post-loss goals and transition successfully into their post-settlement financial lives

3 Settlement Planning – Website Sample

4 Why Include Settlement Planning as a Practice Area? Planning skills are similar to a special needs/elder law practice Potential clients are recognizable i.e., people with disabilities, minors, elders, and adults who require assistance with money Potential clients are motivated Oftentimes requiring a plan before money can be distributed from plaintiff’s attorney trust account

5 Financial Results Myers Urbatsch P.C. Settlement Planning Revenue (Jan – Aug. 2014) $520,000 Qualified Settlement Fund (QSF) Establishment & Maintenance - $60,000 Litigation Settlement First Party SNT Establishment - $230,000 Minor’s Settlement Trust Establishment and Advice - $30,000 Court Accountings for SNTs, QSFs, and Minor’s Trusts - $200,000 (2 Attorneys and 2.5 Paralegals)

6 Steps to Building a Successful and Sustainable Settlement Planning Practice 1.Obtain the skills and knowledge 2.Find the referral sources (primarily trial attorneys) 3.Market to the referral sources 4.Work well with Trial attorneys Make yourself immediately available for questions Work fast and efficient 5.Stay abreast of changes in law and be able to communicate those with referral sources

7 What Knowledge is Required?  Laws concerning lawsuit settlements  Managing a Minor or Adult who lacks capacity’s settlement  Requires knowledge of the federal and your state’s civil procedure rules on settling lawsuits  SSI & Medicaid Planning for plaintiff with special needs  Sharon Pope (Oct 15, 2014) ASNP Settlement Planning Webinar Settling the Person with a Disability's Lawsuit: Using (d)(4)(A) and (d)(4)(C) Special Needs Trusts  First Party Special Needs Trust for SSI and Medicaid  (d)(4)(A) SNT  Pooled SNT

8 Knowledge & Skills  Alternative Settlement Planning arrangements  Anthony Prieto & James Creel (Oct 29, 2014) ASNP Settlement Planning Webinar Settlement Planning for Person without Special Needs: Using Settlement Trusts and Alternatives  Consider Traditional Estate Planning  Create Living Trust or Will based plan  Ancillary Documents (Powers of Attorney and Health Care Directives)  Incapacity Planning  Establish and Maintain Guardianship or Conservatorship

9 Skills & Knowledge Always important to keep current with changing laws Affordable Care Act will fundamentally alter considerations in creating a proper settlement plan David Lillesand ASNP Settlement Planning Webinar (Nov 12, 2014), Settlement Planning Using the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid Expansion

10 Knowledge & Skills  Financial Settlement Planning  Understanding and using structured settlement annuities as part of a settlement plan  Jack Meligan (Dec 3, 2014) ASNP Settlement Planning Webinar Settlement Financial Planning - Critical Considerations in Using Structured Settlements  Understanding the lifetime financial planning for a person with a disability who is unable to work  Scott MacDonald (Dec. 17, 2014) ASNP Settlement Planning Webinar Comprehensive Settlement Financial Planning - The Needs Based Approach

11 Knowledge & Skills  Medicare Set Aside Arrangements (MSA) are used to preserve the future use of Medicare for plaintiffs  Recent topic and much discussed in personal injury and medical malpractice matters  Jason Lazarus, ASNP Settlement Planning webinar, (Jan 7, 2015) Establishing and Administering Medicare Set-Aside Arrangements  Qualified Settlement Funds (QSF) are a useful tool to assist in resolving lawsuits and providing time for planning  Michele Fuller, ASNP Settlement Planning webinar, (Jan 21, 2015) Understanding and Using Qualified Settlement Funds (QSF)

12 Knowledge & Skills  Lien Resolution is an important (and tricky) part of settlement planning. Many trial attorneys will outsource the lien resolution issues to trained settlement planners  David Place, ASNP Settlement Planning webinar series, (Feb 4, 2015) Lien Resolution - ERISA and Private Liens  Josh Brothers, ASNP Settlement Planning webinar series, (Feb 18, 2015) Lien Resolution – Medicare and Medicaid

13 Skills Required  Tax Planning is an essential skill needed when executing any type of settlement plan  Jeremy Babener, ASNP Settlement Planning webinar (Mar 4, 2015) Income Tax Planning for Litigation Recoveries  Working with and Marketing to Trial Attorneys is an essential part of building and maintaining a settlement planning practice  Jason Lazarus and Scott MacDonald, ASNP Settlement Planning webinar (Mar 18, 2015) Working with and Marketing to Trial Attorneys

14 Related Revenue Sources  Estate Planning  Create Living Trust or Will based plan  Ancillary Documents (Powers of Attorney and Health Care Directives)  Incapacity Planning  Establish and Maintain Guardianship or Conservatorship

15 Knowing it All? Working with a planning team is usually best Special Needs/ Estate Planning Attorney Financial Advisor/Structure Settlement Broker CPA/Enrolled Agent/Tax Attorney MSA professional QSF professional Life care planner Benefits coordinator/consultant Professional trustee

16 Finding the Referral Sources

17 Market to the Referral Sources 1.Joining trial attorney’s listserve 2.Presenting to trial attorneys by using the [soon to be released] ASNP’s Settlement Planning Power Point 3.Becoming the Expert – Writing articles published in trial lawyer magazines 4.Attending as many trial attorney functions as possible 5.Using ASNP’s quarterly Settlement E-Newsletter to stay in touch with referral sources

18 Best Marketing for Settlement Planning Practice Word-of-mouth from Trial Attorneys Become the trial attorneys go-to-resource for all things settlement planning Agree to take calls on any subject and help solve issues Good opportunity for referring business to others Pretty soon, trial attorneys you have never heard of will be seeking you out

19 Marketing That Works Join Associations/List Serve Join trial lawyer associations American Association of Justice (AAJ) Consumer Attorneys of California (CAOC) San Francisco Trial Lawyer Attorneys (SFTLA) Join list serves Respond to questions on settlement planning on list serves Not only answers the one question but advertises your knowledge to the lurkers Downside - Big commitment in time monitoring list serves

20 Write Articles for Trial Lawyer Suggested topics: Settling the Person with a Disability’s Lawsuit See Attached Article published in Plaintiff’s Magazine Settling the Minor’s Lawsuit See Attached article published in Plaintiff’s Magazine When Are Medicare Set Aside Arrangements Required? How Qualified Settlement Funds Can Be Used to Aid Settlements See Attached article published in Trial Lawyer Magazine Understanding ERISA’s Rights Structured Settlements and Financial Planning

21 Putting on Seminars for All Professionals Goal is to become your area’s go-to special needs person Professional Organizations that need presenters National – ABA, AAJ, ASNP, NAELA, Eldercounsel State – State Bar Association, Trial Lawyer Association, Local – Local Trial Association [usually best results], estate planning council, estate attorneys Usually low-cost, someone else puts on the program New power point Settlement Planning for the Plaintiff with a Disability

22 Using ASNP’s Marketing Materials Updated Settlement Planning Brochure Settlement Planning for Plaintiffs (available soon) Using ASNP’s Settlement e-newsletter Great drip marketing tool to keep your trial attorneys apprised of the latest news in settlement planning

23 Working with Personal Injury/Medical Malpractice Attorney MOST IMPORTANT - Do not be the reason payment for the settlement is being delayed Be responsive, call or write back immediately Acknowledge the trial attorney’s accomplishment Recognize the trial attorney’s emotional involvement in helping the client Be willing to meet the plaintiff in the trial attorney’s office Be open to SNT alternatives Prepare the trust immediately Offer to appear at any hearings where the SNT may be at issue

24 Ancillary Business - QSF Qualified Settlement Fund (QSF) - IRC § 468B Used for settlements of lawsuit Business opportunities: Requires a court order Usually is part of a trust document that you can draft Attorney can serve as Administrator

25 Ancillary Business – Serving as Trustee/ Advising Trustee Several attorneys maintain a robust practice in serving as trustee for SNTs or other trusts established as part of settlement plan Advising trustee is also a way to build up steady and consistent income in providing legal advice and doing court accountings

26 Ancillary Business: Medicare Set Aside (MSA) Congress enacted the Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) Statute giving Medicare rights as “Secondary Payer” The Medicare Set-Aside Arrangement (MSA) is the preferred method for handling Medicare’s future medical costs Business Opportunities Establishing MSAs Administering MSA’s

27 Conclusion Settlement planning is an excellent area of practice, it provides a steady stream of interesting and diverse cases and steady revenue Working with trial attorneys can be challenging and is not for everybody, but if solid processes are built into your practice and you have tolerance for dealing with last minute desperate calls for work this is a very rewarding practice area

28 Support (866)


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