In cases of minor children and incapacitated persons, settlement claims may need court approval before payment on benefits under an insurance policy can be paid out. Particularly with minor children, the reason behind this is the fact that they don’t have the right or ability to pursue claims or enter into settlement agreements, only their guardian does. In the case of incapacitated persons, their physical state prevents them from filing a claim for benefits – a job that falls on their guardian or administrator of their estate.
The attorneys at Ramey & Kampf, P.A. have extensive experience handling a variety of insurance claims and related legal matters, including the settlement of claims involving minor children and incapacitated minors. Our team of attorneys, paralegals and administrative staff are all well-versed in insurance law, and are committed to resolving insurance matters thoroughly and without delay, all while keeping our insurance industry partners’ best interests in mind.
In matters involving claims of minor children, the parents or natural guardian is authorized to accept settlement proceeds without court involvement when the amounts received, taken together, do not exceed $15,000. However, if a person under the age of 18 receives a settlement in an amount greater than $15,000 as the result of being injured, the settlement must be approved by a judge and administered through “a minor guardianship.”
Mistakenly making payments to a parent as natural guardian in the absence of authority to do so does not discharge an obligation to the minor and, thus, the company could be in a position of having to pay twice.
Our insurance defense lawyers are experienced at effectively obtaining court approval of minor settlements in any amount and assisting in establishing court restricted accounts for deposit of settlement funds. We help our insurance company partners throughout the entire process, making sure matters are handled appropriately yet quickly.
In matters involving claims of catastrophic injury or illness, a claimant may be so disabled that he or she is unable to make decisions concerning medical, legal and financial needs, manage daily affairs or competent to enter into a legally binding settlement. In such cases, the appointment of a guardian or establishment of guardianship may be required.
Our firm can assist insurance companies in Florida and the Tampa Bay area with:
The judicial process required in settlement of claims involving minor children and incapacitated persons require an extensive understanding of Florida’s statutory requirements.
If you would like to speak with our team of lawyers to discuss the details of your case, contact our office in Tampa to arrange a consultation. Call 813-241-0123. You may also contact us online to get started.