About Finn Financial Group
|The Finn Financial Group is a full-service, specialty planning firm with a commitment to ensuring the long-term financial stability of its clients. We believe this can best be achieved through a stream of guaranteed , tax-advantaged payments carefully tailored to each individual's specific needs. Our diligent work has resulted in a long list of satisfied clients and a high degree of trust.|
|Finn Financial Group, LLC|
260 Newport Center Drive, Suite 100
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Toll Free: 800.531.7466
Cell: 949.274.5485Fax: 949.999.3375
CA Insurance License: 0A96173
My Daily Journal Letter to the Editor
I'm not usually one to throw stones.
But an article recently appeared in the Daily Journal that raised my ire sufficiently to elicit a response. I'm attaching a copy of my rebuttal Letter to the Editor, published January 13, 2010 in both the San Francisco and Los Angeles editions, for your convenience.
Structured Settlements Offer Financial Security in Good and Bad Times
The Dec. 4, 2009 article by David Higgins ("Recession's Effect on
Settlement and Fees") was loose with its facts and illogical in its
For starters, the author simplifies the very complex subject of economics.
How can he know what the future holds? If he does, then that puts him
above the likes of Paul Volcker and Warren Buffett. Of special note,
particularly in light of Higgins' assurances that inflation will rise, was the
economic community's collective failure to predict our current "Great
Second, his recommendation that people should rethink structuring
their settlements and their attorney fees simply because interest
rates are "at historical [sic] lows" completely misses the mark and is
ingratiatingly misleading. Some things just make sense regardless of
economic realities and it's doubtful that guaranteed, tax-advantaged
future income tailored to an injury victim's (or an attorney's) specific
living needs will ever fall out of favor.
Third, let's put today's rates in context. Long-term interest rates have
been at or below 4 percent for 71 out of the last 135 years (Irrational
Exuberance, Princeton, 2005). That means since the late 19th century,
interest rates have been about where they are now for more than 50
percent of the time. The last time rates were at current levels for longer
than a year was 1924. They remained there for 35 years.
Finally, Higgins neglected to reference his primary connection to the
structured settlement industry these days: He sells his services to
clients who, for a variety of reasons, need or wish to establish a qualified
settlement fund (QSF) when settling their lawsuit. While a QSF can
be a necessary and useful tool in some situations, quite often it merely
adds an unnecessary (and often costly) layer to the settlement process.
In nearly 20 years of providing structured settlement products and
services to clients across the country, I have seen very few situations
where a plaintiff would have been financially better served by choosing
to establish a QSF.
There's no doubt that careful thought must be given to a client's
overall situation before deciding on which settlement option is right
for them. But an unbalanced article that uses fear to discount the
proven and universally accepted value of a properly crafted structured
settlement plan does a disservice to all attorneys and the clients who
trust them to negotiate fair settlements. Structured settlements offer
financial security in good times and in bad. Attorneys and their clients
who reject them out of hand based solely on assumptions about the
future may wish to heed Benjamin Franklin's maxim: "One today is worth
Dan Finn, CPCU, CSSC
President, Finn Financial Group
The original article I took aim at was so full of conjecture, hyperbole and mean-spiritedness that it's hard to imagine anyone not being able to see past its transparency. Suffice it to say the author distorted facts to argue his case that structured settlements were probably not a good idea in this economy (while not-so-subtly promoting his own agenda, by the way).
In addition to my Letter to the Editor, here's some bonus contrarian data to support my belief that the exact opposite is actually true:
In the first quarter of 2009, fixed annuity sales grew by 74% over the same period in 2008 according to LIMRA International, Inc. (Thomas, Trevor. "Fixed Annuity Sales Surge," National Underwriter,
May 29, 2009).
That's $36 billion worth of annuity purchases, in one quarter alone, that suggests people were fleeing their more risky investments in favor of a surer thing.
The need for safety and financial security transcends economy just as it does age, size, gender, race, nationality, creed, or almost anything else. Safe, secure, tax-advantaged, guaranteed income has a place in any economy. Don't fall into the trap of trying to out-smart the future. She always wins!
Thank you for the opportunity to be of service!
Dan Finn, CPCU, CSSC
Certified Structured Settlement Consultant
The Finn Financial Group provides customized, guaranteed future income options and ancillary services to a variety of clients throughout the United States. We pride ourselves on our commitment to the overall financial well-being of the individual. For a greater understanding of the services we provide, click on your area of interest.
For Injury Victims
We provide structured settlements for victims of personal, physical and non-physical injuries.
We help attorneys meet their due diligence obligations, create and analyze proposals, conduct educational seminars, attend mediations, and structure fees - without any charge or out-of-pocket expense to the attorney or client.
For Insurance Companies
We assist insurance companies and self-insured clients by providing structured settlement illustrations and present value analyses, helping to present offers, and consulting with claims management.
For Business and Property Owners
We work with business owners, property owners, and those with certain other qualifying appreciated assets to defer capital gains in the selling process.
For Additional Services
We also offer life insurance, non-structured settlement annuities, retirement annuities, and much more.