Differences Between Pre-paid And Legal Plans

It is not uncommon to see the terms “legal plans” and “pre-paid legal  services” used interchangeably. While they share a lot of characteristics  in common, there are a number of differences you should be aware of.
Both of these terms refer to an arrangement whereby you pay a fixed monthly  or yearly fee in exchange for legal services. The idea behind them is to  save consumers on high legal fees whilst offering a valuable service.  That’s where the differences lie: what kind of service is offered and what  is covered. What are you entitled to in both schemes?
Pre-paid services cover for specific legal services: free phone  consultation and advice, drafting of simple wills and trusts, review of  sample contracts and writing of letters on your behalf. Legal services not  provided will get charged at regular attorney fees, but you may be eligible  for discounts.  Legal insurance, by contrast, works much like other insurance plans, like  health or car insurance. Although specific legal services are offered at  times, your insurance provider will typically offer a policy that covers  for all legal services. The policy will pay on behalf of you, the policy  holder, or reimburse all expenses, costs or fees that you pay for legal  services up to the policy limit. For instance, your policy might reimburse  any fees incurred in your court judgments or pay your bail money – a  service not provided by most pre-paid legal plans.   Your legal insurance is also pegged to other insurance policies you may  already have. If you run into legal problems involving your other  insurane, then your legal insurance policy will protect you against loss  or liability. For instance, if you are involved in a car accident when your  auto-insurance has already run out and you are subsequently sued for  recovery of damages, you will be protected by a legal plan insurance.  The other difference between the two schemes is related to your choice of  attorney. In a pre-paid legal service, you get to choose from a restricted  number of the attorneys in the network. By contrast, a legal insurance plan  provides legal coverage regardless of attorney.  You are free to set up  interviews with any number of attorneys and choose the ones you think will  provide the best service for your personal legal needs.
Finally, pre-paid legal plans are much more accessible to the general  public. Legal plans are harder to come by as only a limited number of  insurance companies offer such arrangements.

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