Minor Prove Up (Friendly Suit) - What is it?

it" is filed in order to obtain Court approval of the settlement. This standard procedure should be filed in every case involving a minor in order to make the settlement binding. A suit is filed seeking approval of the settlement. The suit is often drafted by the settling parties counsel, and signed by the minors' legal guardian as "Next Friend". Once filed, the Court will appoint a "Guardian Ad Litem" who should be an experienced, licensed attorney to review the terms of the settlement and to advise the Judge whether the settlement is in the best interest of the minor. The Guardian Ad Litem's reasonable fee is usually paid by the party paying the settlement. As outstanding medical bills etc should be extinguished through this procedure, it is important that counsel determine and obtain agreements to extinguish any medical liens through the settlement if possible. The case will then be set for "Prove Up". At the Prove Up the Judge will typically hear brief testimony from the "Next Friend" and sometimes the minor, establishing the facts surrounding the settlement and that the settlement is a final binding procedure. The Court will then hear the recommendation of the Guardian Ad Litem. If the Court determines that the settlement is in the best interest of the minor, the Judge will enter a Judgment adopting the settlement agreement. Settlement monies are often paid to medical providers and attorneys to extinguish outstanding bills related to the settlement, with the remainder going either to the registry of the Court to be invested until the minor reaches the age of 18, or into a structured annuity payable to the minor over several years.