If you are selling your structured settlement then you have probably heard the phrase and maybe even told you do not need one by the funding company. Truth is even if you have everything perfect the judges in California( atleast) will continue your case to give you tie to get a IPA. You have all your back up documents and the deal is set and you have gotten the purchaser to come up due to another offer, so why do you still need an independent professional advisor? Well the judge is tasked with among other things in assuring your best interest, and part of that is having an outside professional review the case. In fact many times if the payee has an IPA the judge wil defer all questions to the Independent Professional advisor. So lets look at the role of the IPA: 1. to review your purchase agreement and insure you understand it. 2. make sure that you have your own best interest in mind. 3. to compare and get competing offers to ensure you are getting the best possible deal. 4. go back t the funding company and negotiate based on comparable offers to get you more money while preserving the court date. 5. explain to the payee comparable offers and risks of moving forward should funding company not increase to current market rates. 6. draft letter of independent professional advice for the court. 7. appear in court and speak on behalf of the payee. these are just some of the basic roles of an IPA, and with each and every case being unique and different so are the roles an IPA will assume. Bottom line is the independent professional advisor is there to help the payee get what they want. Most states make mention of an Independent professional advisor, some require n IPA, and some states require the purchaser to pay. In California the structured settlement protection act which is a consumer protection act is set up where the fees are set by the courts and paid by the purchaser. In a sense it is like getting an attorney for free for the payee. Some sales people at the funding companies think you don't need an IPA, which i could never fully understand, well unless it is because that comes out of their commission hahahha. But what people do not understand is a true independent professional advisor will already know what the judges in each court will require, since thy are in front of these same judges on a regular basis. I know for a fact that we have a database of requirements for various court house in regards to structured settlement transfers. But that is something we have personally built over the past 15- 20 years. in closing think of it as if you were buying a used car off of craigslist, you have some tool and know you way around an engine, and the guy selling you the car saying you don't need a mechanic you have a socket wrench.