We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Legal Service Plan?

By Charity Delich
Updated Jan 27, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A legal service plan is an arrangement in which plan members pay a set membership fee in exchange for having a professional network of lawyers on retainer. Most legal service plans offer members advice on a variety of basic legal issues, such as buying or selling a house or car, drawing up a will, handling simple divorce proceedings, or purchasing a small business. Other areas often covered by these service plans can include bankruptcies, adoptions, insurance claims, and landlord-tenant disputes. In general, a legal service plan is most beneficial for individuals who have frequent basic legal questions. Small businesses can also benefit from these plans, realizing significant cost control as well as access to timely legal resources.

Most legal service plans are pre-paid and require members to pay annual or monthly membership fees up-front. Once the fee has been paid, members can access certain legal services as needed. Some companies, unions, and other membership groups offer employees or group members the ability to join a legal service plan at a reduced cost. A family service plan may be offered by some legal service companies, allowing family members to pay reduced membership fees.

In general, a legal service plan is staffed by a network made up of lawyers in private practice or small law firms. Most service plans cover only fundamental legal issues as part of their basic service offerings, and they will charge additional fees for more complex matters. Before signing a legal service plan contract, an individual or small business owner must fully understand the compensation scheme as well as which services the basic membership fee includes. In addition, potential members should be aware of whether there is an annual or monthly cap on the number of legal questions included in the membership fee.

Most plans consider basic services to include general legal consultations, which are usually held over the telephone. In addition, basic services typically cover review of straightforward legal documents, simple will preparation, and letter writing to an adverse party. More comprehensive services, which often require additional fees, can include trial services, bankruptcy court representation, or complicated real estate issues.

Finding the best service plan can be a challenging task, and potential buyers should do their homework prior to shelling out money for membership fees. A potential legal service plan should have a solid track record and be well-known in the legal community. In addition, the plan should allow a member to change lawyers if the member is not satisfied with the one assigned to his or her case. The plan should also spell out which services are included and explain any potential out-of-pocket costs that a member can incur. Finally, the plan should have a mutually agreeable process for resolving any member grievances.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.