How Legal Plans Benefit Employees and Employers
If your company is thinking about offering legal benefits to your employees, it’s natural to wonder if group legal plans are worthwhile. The short answer is that, if an employee has coverage and needs legal representation, then he or she will almost certainly answer with a resounding “yes.” And, if an employee has coverage but hasn’t needed representation yet, it is still providing him or her with peace of mind, and it’s hard to put a price on that.
Group legal services are so valuable that they are expected to be part of a benefits package in Europe. In the United States, they were first offered in the late 1970s and have been considered mainstream options since the 1990s.
Here is a more in-depth answer to the question, from the perspective of both employees and employers.
Benefits of group legal services for employees.
One of the main reasons people don’t use attorneys is the expense. And yet, a percentage of your company’s employees will almost surely face legal challenges over the next year, whether because of financial challenges, family issues, or something else entirely. What happens if, say, someone’s taxes are audited or someone is facing a foreclosure because of unforeseen financial difficulties? What if an employee is suddenly faced with a child custody issue? Unpaid traffic tickets? A need to do estate planning? A group legal plan allows affected employees to address these stressful issues with quality representation.
Having ready access to legal services also helps employees to overcome the sense of being intimidated by the thought of contacting a lawyer. This means they will likely contact an attorney more quickly, which is step one for promptly resolving legal issues.
Benefits of group legal services for employers.
As an employer, you want your employees to be focused on their jobs, but the stress of legal problems can cause distractions—and if the employee can’t pay for effective representation or is too intimidated to contact attorneys, the stress will only worsen. We recently blogged about how the stress of an employee’s divorce can also affect the workplace. So, helping your employees to navigate stress over legal matters is a win-win situation.
And, when an employee can resolve a legal issue, thanks to having access to affordable legal representation through workplace benefits, this will often help to strengthen employee loyalty to your company.