Legal Insurance Plans: Get Insurance for Legal Services for Less

1
Is Buying Legal Insurance Worth it? How Does it Work?

man falling down stairs in pain - get legal help
Oops! Its a good thing he has legal insurance to get counsel. bilderlounge/bilderlounge / Getty Images

Lawyers are notoriously expensive. As a result, many people who would benefit from legal counsel end up getting the short end of the stick because they can't afford a lawyer.

On the flip side of the situation, in our increasingly litigious society, people who are armed with a lawyer tend to win, sometimes without even going to court, over those who do not. Why? Because the threat of a legal battle often makes people give in on small cases or give up without exploring how much they could be entitled to.

Legal Insurance Is About Protecting Your Rights and Taking Charge

In this step by step, we'll walk you through some of the questions you may have about legal insurance, including:

  • What is Legal Insurance and How Much Does It Cost?
  • Who Benefits From Legal Insurance? Do I Really Need It?
  • Checklist: 23 Everyday Items Legal Insurance May Be Able to Help You With - You Might Be Surprised!
  • List of Insurance Companies That Offer Legal Insurance or Pre-Paid Legal (You may even already have it for free!)
  • 10 Questions to Ask Before You Purchase a Legal Insurance Plan

By the time we are done, you'll be on your way to ask the right questions so you can make the choices to protect your rights and those of the people you love with the help of a good plan that puts the law on your side. Let's get started!

2
Who Can Benefit From Legal Insurance?

Child Injured on the playground
Who can benefit from legal insurance? Is it worth it?. martinedoucet / E+ / Getty Images

Should You Buy Legal Insurance?

Because of the low cost of legal insurance, almost anyone can benefit from purchasing a plan. Unless you have a savings fund devoted to "just in case you have to call a lawyer", legal insurance is a great option to make sure you never feel pressured, or get taken advantage of because you didn't know your rights.

  • If you are starting out in life, buying a home, just starting a family, legal insurance can help you find advice for many situations that come up along the way, even help with taxes! It's like having a trusted adviser always at your disposal. With the right legal insurance,money will never stop you from getting the right advice.
  • If you have kids, many situations may come up where you would benefit from legal advice. Do you think you are being harassed? Are you having problems in the workplace? Is your child being bullied? Legal advice can help you navigate these issues and protect you.
  • How about if you need a will? Legal insurance may help you there too.
  • Legal insurance is also extremely beneficial later in life, as you try and sell property, manage your assets, deal with the loss of loved ones, and estate management or planning.
  • Seniors are at increased risk of dealing with scams and fraud. Having access to a lawyer may help prevent being victim to these kinds of crimes.

In essence, anyone who doesn't have access to legal advice already, or can not afford to be keeping a lawyer on retainer should consider buying legal insurance. Still wondering what your risks are, or if it's worth the money to buy legal insurance? Try this Legal Risk Quiz!

Does My Home Insurance Personal Liability Cover My Legal Costs?

Your homeowner insurance provides some legal cost coverage under the personal liability coverage. To understand more about your homeowner legal liability coverage, you can read this article: 3 Ways Personal Liability Protects You.  

Also, don't forget that Home Insurance often offers some coverage for Identity theft or fraud, find out what your home insurance company offers yo before you make a decision on your legal insurance plan options. This could save you some money, it pays to compare.

3
What is Legal Insurance and How Much Does It Cost?

Collecting saving in jars
Is Legal Insurance One of The Things You've Saved For?. JGI/Jamie Grill / BlendImages / Getty Images

How Much of Your Savings Are Set Aside for Legal Costs?

If you are like most people, saving for legal costs is hardly on a priority list. Legal Insurance is a solid option to pay very little, yet gain access to legal advice and services that may save money for you long term.

What is Legal Insurance or Pre-Paid Legal Coverage?

Legal plans go by various different names, here are a few examples: 

  • Legal Protection Insurance (LPI)
  • Pre-Paid Legal (PPL)
  • Legal Insurance

Whatever name the coverage goes by, it can be is an extremely valuable resource available at a very low cost. In order to understand the type of coverage you are buying, you will want to ask some specific questions about access to services, as well as understand if there are any exclusions. Only when you understand what is being offered can you evaluate the cost.

Legal insurance coverage is like having a lawyer on call at all times, without having to pay the hourly lawyer fees out of your pocket.The concept of this coverage is just like any other insurance: you purchase it in advance, before an incident happens, so that if you need the coverage (legal advice or services) in the future, you can access the service in exchange for the premiums you've been paying.

Can You Afford Legal Insurance?

Ever heard the saying the rich get richer, and the poor get poorer? Well, one might argue that the rich benefit from top lawyers and advice, and this is what helps them stay on top.

Legal Insurance is protection and advice that you can get for less than $1 a day in many cases.

That's less than a cup of coffee! At that price, anyone can afford it, you just need to decide if access to this kind of protection is worth it for you. Review the list of items that legal insurance can help you with and you will be surprised at how many areas of your life a good legal plan can help you get ahead,

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23 Things Covered By Legal Insurance and Pre-Paid Legal

Stack of Legal Books - Understanding the Law and Rights
Get Help Understanding Your Rights and the Law. Tetra Images / Getty Images

What Is Covered By Legal Insurance and Pre-Paid Legal?

Coverage conditions vary from provider to provider, however, you can use this list to compare to the plan(s) you are looking at, and also to evaluate if these kinds of services would be useful to you. Plans may include counsel and legal representation in the following areas:

  • Buying and selling houses
  • Refinancing, Consumer/creditor problems, Avoiding Bankruptcy
  • Tax Questions
  • Adopting/having children
  • Single Parent Legal Issues and Questions
  • Help with understanding contracts and legal documents
  • Preparing legal documents or letters
  • Protecting your rights as a tenant
  • Preparing a Will or Living Will
  • Estate Planning
  • Home Improvement or Contractor Issues
  • Consumer Protection
  • Traffic Tickets, Auto repair or new or used vehicle purchases
  • Divorce/Family Law (This is often excluded or limited in policies, be sure and get full details about waiting periods, eligibility, and limitations. Where some coverages may not be limited, this one often is.) Existing issues may not be covered like an ongoing divorce, but in some cases, like for example with single parents there are all kinds of smaller issues that come up and coverage may be useful. 
  • Criminal Violations (make sure you inquire fully about this coverage if it is of interest or concern to you, most plans have exclusions or very specific conditions or limitations)
  • Juvenile Defense
  • Civil Matters

How Does Legal Insurance Work?

Legal insurance is most often compared to the concept of health insurance, where you can be covered for issues that did not exist when you first purchased the coverage, but issues that exist before the purchase of the coverage are usually excluded.

Insurance is never meant to cover situations you are predicting or foreseeing.

Insurance is meant to cover unexpected occurrences, so legal insurance covers you in the same way. If your neighbor calls you to say he is going to sue you, you can't call to purchase legal insurance that night and expect your coverage to kick in and apply to the situation you already knew about.

Buy Legal Insurance Before You Know You Need it

For the minimal cost of less than $1 a day with most providers, and as low as $15 a month with others, you're better off to buy the coverage than to wait until you think you need it. By then, it is too late.

Legal Insurance is a Great Way to Make Sure You Always Have the Law On Your Side and You Get Ahead.

Tip:  Before you make a decision on the coverages you need from a legal plan, check with your home insurer. Don't double up on coverages if you do not have to.

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List of Insurance Companies That Offer Legal Insurance or Pre-Paid Legal

Smiling Judge Get the Law On Your Side
Legal Insurance Helps Get The Law On Your Side With Good Advice. Paul Bradbury / Caiaimage / Getty Images

 

3 Key Places to Get Legal Insurance or Pre-Paid Legal Services

  1. Legal insurance may be included as a benefit of a group insurance plan from your employer. It may also be offered as part of a credit union, union or other organization you belong to. Before you start looking into spending money on a personal plan, first find out if you already have something included through your work group insurance or the other organizations mentioned above.You wouldn't be the first person to have legal insurance and not even realize it.
  2. Legal insurance may be offered by your home and car insurance company under their specialty product line division. For example, you can look at the Individual Legal Insurance Plan offered by Nationwide Insurance. Ask your home insurer if they offer similar specialty insurance lines or value added packages.
  3. Personal legal plans are also sold by specific legal insurance providers who specialize in this type of coverage, I checked out a few programs to help you get started on your legal insurance search, here's what I found:
  • ARAG has been around for 80 years and is one of the oldest providers of legal insurance with millions of customers around the world. They have several personal plans to choose from as well as extensive helpful resources on their website to help guide you in legal issues in several areas. It is definitely worth visiting their site and bookmarking it as a resource.Their legal insurance customer testimonials section provides a good range of examples of how legal insurance programs can help save money and get things resolved hassle free.
  • U.S. Legal Services, which offers a 'Family Defender Package' cited on their site to be voted "one of the most comprehensive legal plans available by consumers".
  • Country-Wide Pre-Paid Legal Services offers a personal legal protection plan

Tips: Before you choose a plan, keep reading for a list of questions that reveal what plans may or may not cover. It will help you identify which coverages are important for your situation, so you can find the right one.

Don't forget that fellow consumers are also a fantastic resource to help you determine if a plan will work for you, do some research, check online reviews before you make any decisions. 

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10 Questions to Ask Before You Purchase a Legal Insurance Plan

Looking through legal documents with a lawyer
Getting the right legal advice can help you get the money you deserve and prevent others from taking advantage of you through scams and lawsuits. Paul Bradbury/Getty Images

Getting the Right Legal Insurance Program Can Make Sure You Get Compensated and Helps You Avoid Being Scammed

We often don't think about all the things that happen in our day to day lives where we could benefit from some solid legal counsel. The list of coverages legal advice can offer you helps remind us of some situations that we can benefit from legal insurance. The basics like writing a will, or even fighting a moving violation seem small, but having access to services that help you in this process can make a major difference.

How to Choose a Good Legal Services Plan?

Check out this list and get the full picture before you commit to a plan, this way when you need to use the services, you will know exactly what to expect and how to get help fast.

10 Questions to Ask Before You Purchase a Legal Insurance Plan

  1. Is there a waiting period before coverage takes effect?
  2. If I need assistance how do I access the service? What is the procedure?
  3. What are the hours I can get assistance in? Who provides assistance?
  4. Can I choose my own lawyer?
  5. Will I speak to the same person every time?
  6. Is Family Law covered? What about employment issues like wrongful dismissal?
  7. Is preparation of legal documents covered?
  8. Is there a limit on how many consultations are included in the plan?
  9. Are there any attorney fees beyond the monthly plan?
  10. What kind of consultations are available? Is it call center, or telephone only, or can you meet with a lawyer in person?

Don't Get Taken Advantage of Because You Don't Understand Your Rights

Legal insurance can help you save money by avoiding legal expenses and by providing guidance. Beyond that, it will help protect you from being taken advantage of, or may help by guiding you through difficult situations. If you are not in a position to take care of unexpected legal costs, or are in a time in your life where legal advice may come in handy. Consider putting legal insurance into your budget, for less than the price of a cup of coffee a day it seems like it's worth it. Don't you think?