Structured settlements are sometimes offered in personal injury cases in lieu of single payment compensation. Instead of offering an injured plaintiff a single cash payment, a structured settlement is offered, whereby multiple payments are made over time. Structured settlements are a good idea when future medical bills and costs are uncertain, when the party making the payment is unable to pay a single large sum all at once, or when the plaintiff prefers having income coming in at regular intervals. There are both advantages and disadvantages to this option that must be carefully considered before this type of settlement is accepted. This section provides details about what structured settlements are, how they work and the pros and cons of choosing them over a single payment.