A structured settlement is basically where a settlement or award is given out in increments instead of being given out all at once. Usually an insurance company is used for these. These payments can be made either weekly, monthly or other such period as the client agrees on.
The benefits of a structured settlement are that it can act like an annuity or retirement for a client to get periodic payments rather than one lump sum. It can essentially be used as a supplemental income. There can also be some tax advantages to doing a structured settlement that a tax advisor could elobarate on based on each person's unique circumstances.
A structured settlement can also be especially helpful for minors who may not be able to handle a relatively large sum of money after turning 18. For all of these reasons a structured settlement is something that should be discussed with an attorney after receiving an award, and it is important that clients are aware of this option.