DALLAS, April 30, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Company officials today announced the launch of the Independent family of companies including subsidiary affiliates Independent Life Insurance Company and Independent Life Assignment Company. Independent Life will be the first annuity provider to focus solely on the structured settlement market to help personal injury victims and their families. The Texas-based company will complement the industry's current life insurance carriers that offer annuities to fund structured settlements from their larger suite of insurance products. Independent Life Assignment Company will work with settlement advisors to craft customized payments streams that best meet the financial needs of personal injury victims and their families and will fund those streams with custom annuities from Independent Life.
A structured settlement is a negotiated financial arrangement where a person, who receives a settlement related to a worker's compensation or personal injury claim, agrees to receive tax-free periodic payments on an agreed schedule, rather than as an immediate lump sum. The responsibility to make those future payments as negotiated in the personal injury settlement is taken on by an assignment company and funded by a licensed insurance company. Frequently, the parties seek structured settlements because claimants are deemed incapable of managing their finances independently or are too young or because it offers guaranteed, attractive benefits they cannot match on their own.
Independent Life Assignment Company will serve a nationwide market soliciting assignment of settlement liabilities from settling parties and buy funding annuities from Independent Life Insurance Company, its newly launched sister company.
Independent Life Assignment Company, Independent Life Insurance Company and their holding company, Independent Insurance Group, were formed as a collaboration between management and LKCM Headwater Investments ("LKCM Headwater"), the private investment arm of Luther King Capital Management, a Fort Worth based investment firm founded in 1979 with approximately $15 billion in assets under management for high net worth individuals, institutional clients, private investment partnerships and mutual funds.
"We spent significant time and effort designing and creating these companies with valuable input from industry leaders," said James D. Atkins, CEO of Independent Life Insurance Company. "We believe Independent's singular focus on annuities to fund structured settlements will result in excellent service and broker support, as well as upper tier pricing, to improve and help grow the industry."
In addition to Atkins, the Independent Life management team includes Donald J. Herrema, Vice Chairman and Chief Investment Officer, and J. Todd Hagely, Chief Financial Officer. Atkins is also President of Independent Life Assignment Company with Daniel P. Durbin, Vice President of Marketing and Sales, Patrick J. Hindert, Vice President of Business Development and Christopher M. Bua, Vice President of Internal Sales.
Independent's risk profile is dramatically different from all previous annuity providers funding structured settlements because it is a single purpose insurer without the entanglements of unrelated product lines that have challenged some other providers. Additionally, it does not have any historical structured settlement annuities with pricing out of alignment with today's investment environment.
Independent Life was founded by Independent Insurance Group's Chairman of the Board Michael A. Upchurch. "LKCM Headwater and Michael realized that there was a critical and growing need for structured settlement solutions for severely injured individuals that will enable them to better manage their lives," said Atkins. "We took his vision and will move it forward by being a company that can help provide those solutions, so those individuals can achieve those goals."