Getting by financially while your attorney works to settle can be the hardest part of a personal injury lawsuit.
Lawsuit loans can help plaintiffs in the interim, but the money comes at a cost. If you’ve lost your job or are unable to work, controlling your expenses should be the #1 priority.
Setting up budgets for various items is the first step. But how much should you be spending?
How much income do you have?
Figure out the total money you have coming in monthly. If there are any taxes you have to pay on this money, be sure that the amount is subtracted from the total.
Has your injury left you unable to work? If you haven’t already, look into applying for welfare, unemployment benefits, social security etc. Ask your attorney about what support systems other clients have used in the past.
What do you NEED to get by?
There are some expenses that are necessary (food, housing, utilities, etc.) and some that can be cut or delayed (entertainment, clothing, eating out, etc.). The easiest way to cut expenses is by looking at the latter.
Cook! Only spend $20 per week / person on food
One of the easiest ways to save money is by cooking for yourself instead of eating out or buying frozen items. You should be able to spend less that $20 / person in a household per week and stay full and healthy. Remember that if you want to cook regularly, keep it simple, flavorful, and fast.
Cooking for the week can be an extremely effective way to reduce the amount of time you spend preparing. If you spend one hour each weekend cooking, you can have meals for the entire week easily.
Focus on flavor — spices like garlic or seasoned salt can go a long way and make just about anything taste good.
You can do a lot to make cooking cheaper. Focus on ingredients like:
- Potatoes (especially sweet potatoes)
- Home-baked bread
Treat protein as a side-dish instead of the bulk of the meal and focus on chicken (thighs are the cheapest) and pork or beef shoulder / pot roast.
Using a slow cooker, dutch oven, or pressure cooker can make the prep process a lot shorter, and usually leads to very tender meat, regardless of cut.
Apply for section eight housing if you qualify. Actively look for cheaper rent if needed. If your injury has led to homelessness, there are wide variety of support services available. Look to your city, county, or state website for comprehensive lists of resources in your area.
Delay or Avoid Non-Critical Expenses
Avoid buying new clothing. If you do need something new for whatever reason, it may be a good idea to seek out used clothing or salvation army stores.
Get a cheaper cell phone plan. There are frequently promotions that allow you to get cheap rates on basic phone plans. Avoid data by using wifi.
Don’t go to bars, or avoid drinking alcohol at bars. This is a very easy way to greatly exceed your budget without even thinking about it.
If you’re going out for a special event at which you would otherwise imbibe, bring your own alcohol or drink in advance.
If you have a car, keep it in good shape. Focus on safe driving so that you don’t have to cover a deductible or worse.
Don’t buy lottery tickets, cigarettes, etc. These are all very expensive and lend nothing to keeping you alive and healthy. You can buy a few tickets if you’d like once you’ve got your settlement.
If you have insurance, these should be covered. If they aren’t being covered by your insurance, don’t pay out-of-pocket. Talk to your attorney about having medical providers take a lien against your case.
Uplift Legal Funding
Once you come up with a budget, if you are still cash negative, give us a call. Once you’ve budgeted out once you absolutely need to get by, Uplift will be happy to help you cover the difference with lawsuit funding. You can reach us at (800) 385-3660 or apply online anytime.