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American Association of Settlement Consultants

Political Action

 

Structured settlements must be protected by Congress. AASC PAC will support policymakers who serve as our champions in Washington, D.C.

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Legislative Agenda

117th Congress (2021-2022)


  1. Continue to protect the tax code for structured settlements – 130 and 104(a)(2). These provisions of the tax code are the bedrock of our profession - they have protected millions of individuals and their families from prematurely dissipating their funds and are critical to preserving injured parties‘ financial independence.


  1. Encourage the development of useful market-based products for structured settlements. Factors to consider in the process include usefulness to settlement planning, acceptability to settling parties, and consideration of potential regulatory and/or legislative changes. Settling parties are often reluctant to embrace structured settlements because they feel that current products do not sufficiently address existing needs. Enhanced product offerings will likely prevent many inappropriate lump sum settlements.


  1. Provide better understanding of structured settlement benefits to policymakers by obtaining better statistics on client outcomes. Request that the GAO quantify the share of lump sum settlements that are prematurely dissipated, and the economic burden shouldered by the government as a result. Use statistics to better educate members of Congress regarding the benefits of structured settlements – how they protect consumers, provide life-long income, and reduce reliance on public assistance.


  1. Expand 104(a)(2) to include sexual assault, sexual abuse, molestation, PTSD and emotional distress. The question of when settlements and damage awards can be excluded from gross income is arbitrary and continues to confuse taxpayers. Incidents involving the aforementioned torts cause lasting harm to clients and should receive the same preferential tax treatment as those currently allowed by 104(a)(2).


  1. Prevent pooled special needs trusts from being deemed a security subject to SEC regulation. Pooled trusts serve injury victims, who are disabled and elderly, to help preserve Medicaid and SSI benefits, which are based on financial need.

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The FEC limits individual PAC contributions to $5,000 per year. AASC PAC contributions are subject to the prohibitions and limitations of the Federal Election Campaign Act, which prohibits federal contributions from corporations, labor unions, and foreign nationals who are not admitted for permanent residence. All contributions are voluntary, must be made from personal funds and may not be reimbursed by any other person. Contributions are not tax deductible. Federal election law requires AASC PAC to collect and report the name, mailing address, occupation, and name of employer for each individual whose contributions aggregate in excess of $200 per calendar year. This information will be collected on our PAC donation site. Thank you for your support!