When the viatical settlements
market collapsed, investment companies expanded their secondary market life insurance purchases to the elderly to keep the life-insurance-backed securities asset market alive.
The Virginia Viatical Settlements
Act, however, requires such companies to pay 60% to 80%.
In order to make their medical records available to third parties in the viatical settlement
process, insureds must authorize their physicians and other health care givers, in writing, to release their private medical records.
Although viatical settlements
were devised to help terminally ill viators and can be legitimate, the viatical industry has been characterized as "infected with scam artists, `ponzi' schemes, and other fraudulent activities.
A viatical settlement
is but one financial option, but it is one that can provide convenient access to much-needed cash.
The viator receives some estimate of the present value of his policy, and the viatical settlement
company takes part of the purchase price the investor pays, and also may take part of the insurance proceeds when paid out.
15) Therefore, the practitioner charged with assisting the personal representative must be cognizant of the Viatical settlement
issues and thus make certain that the personal representative properly reports the Viatical settlements
on the decedents final return.
Another is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996--which, ironically, was intended to enhance the value of viatical settlements
by making them tax-exempt.
Receipt of viatical settlement
proceeds could disqualify the recipient's eligibility for certain means-based entitlement programs such as Medicaid or other government benefits.
This article focuses on the viatical settlement
enable an insured to receive benefits, prior to death, to pay for the costs of care.
This letter responds to the February article "Policing Terminal Illness Investing, How Florida Regulates Viatical Settlement
Contracts" by Michael Cavendish.