About LegalShield

Based out of Ada, OK, LegalShield claims to have been providing “affordable attorney access and legal services” to consumers across 49 U.S. states and four Canadian provinces for more than 40 years. All LegalShield services are provided on a prepaid basis, and are available for both individuals and small businesses.

LegalShield holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, despite having 142 closed complaints within the last three years—most of which centered around problems with the product/service. From a customer satisfaction standpoint, online customer reviews appear to be primarily negative, with the most common complaints citing poor customer service, complicated contact procedures, patronizing/unknowledgeable lawyers, and high hidden fees.

How LegalShield Works

According to this study on the LegalShield website, more than 57 million Americans have some kind of ongoing legal issue. And, according to this study, nearly 60% of businesses have faced “significant legal events” in the past two years. As a result, the primary goal of LegalShield is to help individuals and small businesses obtain prepaid legal services from a network of provider attorneys, all for one low, flat rate. Their plans include:

Personal Plans:

  • Consultation – Letters and phone calls, document review, and trial defense.
  • Document Preparation – Powers of Attorney, wills, loan documents, etc.
  • Auto – Traffic violations and accidents.
  • Family Matters – Name change assistance, divorce & adoption representation, and more.
  • IRS – Audit services.

Identity Theft Plans:

  • ID Plan – Covers both you and your spouse for single credit monitoring and restoration services, in addition to unlimited consultations.
  • ID Premium – Includes everything in the ID Plan, with the addition of triple credit monitoring, web watch, SS number skip trace, and more.

Small Business Plans:

  • Includes legal consultation regarding debt collection, contract review, trial defense services, landlord/tenant disputes, and much more.

Regardless of which plan you choose, or whether you’re an individual or a business, LegalShield is supported by a team of hand-picked “Providers,” which are legal firms hired by the company, who are paid in advance for their services, and are supposedly fully committed to solving your problems.

Based on information found on the company’s website, using LegalShield’s services entails a six-step process:

  1. Sign up for a LegalShield account.
  2. Review your membership packet, which will give you your legal provider’s information.
  3. Register yourself on the Member’s website.
  4. When an issue or questions arises, contact your provider law firm.
  5. Explain your legal problem to the provider law firm, who will then assign a lawyer best suited to address your needs.
  6. Finally, you’ll receive a call from your lawyer within eight hours of your request.

Based on many of the complaints we read, it appears the majority of users found this process to be needlessly complex. For instance, if you happened to miss your lawyer’s call within the 8-hour window, you’ll have to re-contact the law firm, and wait another 8 hours to have your call returned.

LegalShield Pricing & Refund Policy

LegalShield’s pre-paid plans are as follows:

  • Personal Plans: $19.95 per month
  • Identity Theft Plans:
    • ID Plan – $14.95 per month
    • ID Premium – $29.95 per month
  • Small Business Plans: These plans are completely customized based on your business’s needs. As a result, pricing can vary.

For each plan, there are several different add-ons in a range of prices, so for full details, click here. Each month you’ll be automatically charged according to your plan, which can be automatically deducted from your credit card or bank account. Regardless of which membership option or add-ons you choose though, keeping mind that you’ll be assessed a $10 “enrollment fee” your first month.

Bottom Line: Is LegalShield a Scam?

So, with all this in mind, is LegalShield a scam? While the company appears to offer a legitimate range of products, there are a few things you should keep in mind prior to joining.

First—as with most things in life—you get what you pay for, and LegalShield is no different. Think of it this way: If you were required to hire a lawyer for a minor upcoming court case, it’s completely feasible to expect to pay anywhere from $5K to $10K, depending on a wide range of factors. With this is mind, the quality of legal services you could reasonably expect to receive for just $20 per month is fairly low. And, many of the online customer complaints we read referenced this specific fact more than anything else. So, if you’re expecting to receive personalized, responsive service from knowledgeable, highly rated firms for this amount, you may want to reconsider

Next, it appears that LegalShield has a relatively poor reputation for customer service. Most often, we read of difficulties encountered when trying to cancel plans, and service personnel who are more concerned about creating cumbersome processes than they are about solving problems.

Finally, when you consider that anything more than simple form-letter writing, a cursory review of your situation, or superficial advice (which may or may not be correct) will cost you much more than your standard monthly fee, using a LegalShield lawyer may be more expensive than hiring a lawyer direct. In fact, in one complaint we read, someone who claimed to have an immense amount of legal experience stated that you’ll be paying about 30% more overall.

With all this in mind, unless you’re looking for help with the most basic of legal services (which are often simple enough to handle yourself), you may want to think twice about joining LegalShield.

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37 Consumer Reviews for LegalShield

Average Consumer Rating: 2.6
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 14 4 star: 1 3 star: 0 2 star: 2 1 star:  20
Bottom Line: 43% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 37
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  • Wasted 8 years of money paying for something that is a lie

    • Campbell, CA,
    • May 24, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Never did I know this was a scam until I needed to use the membership. They strung me along for six months on a case that they ended up not helping us with. Instead, they said to go to small claims court. I was with them for 8 years and canceled today. I do not recommend this company.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • Scam artists!

    • New York,
    • May 16, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    They took advantage of me when I was most vulnerable. Broke, in need of money to pay rent, and they recruited me to sell saying the service "sells itself." Couldn’t be further from the truth. If a person buys the full family plan, it costs them about $50 a month. Multiply that by 12. Do you think you’ll need $600 worth of legal help this year? The majority don’t. No one would buy, so when I tried canceling the $249 I had spent on "marketing services," they said I could not get a refund and that there was a 5-day grace period I was NEVER made aware of. Stay far away from this company, both buying the service and selling it.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 2 people found this review helpful

    I can't believe an attorney from LA referred me to LegalShield

    I was searching for a lawyer in LA for my daughter on Google and an attorney that picked up the phone told me to register to LegalShield for $300 a year. All other attorneys asked me for a retainer for $10000 and $500 an hour.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 18 people found this review helpful

    Best service I've EVER had

    Let me ask you this, can you afford an attorney at $300 an hour to consult with you about any matter that's worth less than $5000? Say it's a dispute on a bill, a defective product, maybe a problem with your vehicle warranty or a dispute with your deposit with a landlord? Would you normally hire an attorney for these situations and many others? For $300 a year, this is a NO BRAINER. It's interesting to see all the comments on here and how narrow-minded these people are. ANY law firm will charge you $300-$800 an hour for a consultation, letter on your behalf or even reviewing documentation.

    I've called the law firm over 10 TIMES on one legal matter concerning landlord-tenant, tell me ANY law firm in the country that an attorney would talk to you that many times without charging you one single hour? I've used them for situations with utility bills, insurance claims, family law, issues with a defective cell phone, vehicle warranty at a car dealership, etc. I can't tell you countless times they've saved me thousands of dollars. All together I've recovered and saved about $20,000 from many legal situations that I normally couldn't afford an attorney.

    Please think twice before you let these narrow-minded reviews cloud your judgment on changing your life with this incredible service.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • Apr 16, 2018

      Mark

      This review appears to be a carefully crafted marketing piece by an obvious distributor of the product. Not a helpful review in my opinion.

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  • 6 out 11 people found this review helpful

    I have used them over 15 times

    • West Palm Beach, FL,
    • Apr 14, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have been a member since 2011, and have used the law firm service over 15 times. I have even visited my local law firm when they have an open house to its members. It was amazing to find out how large the firm actually was, and some of the stats that they shared about the lawyers. Most of the lawyers that work with LegalShield members average 20+ years of experience.

    Every time I call I get a call back in a timely manner. After every conversation with my law firm, I have felt relieved and at ease. I have had challenges with some of the results I have received, but I realized the law is not always as fear as we wish it was. I have used the service for traffic tickets, disputes with internet providers, a challenge with a hotel, a dispute with a college, created my will, dispute with a canceled airline ticket, and even when I received the wrong prescription from a pharmacy. The list goes on, and every time they were professional and responsive.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • Apr 21, 2018

      John

      Daniel, you work for the company. Why do you not make that clear prior to posting, that you don't use the service but rather sell the service? Always disclose any conflict of interest first, when it comes out later any credibility or trust is gone.

    • Apr 24, 2018

      Daniel Sardine

      John, thank for your comment. I was actually a happy member for three years prior to becoming affiliated with the company. One of the reasons I actually became affiliated was because of my belief in the service. By the way, I did not mention any connection with the company because my review was based on my personal experience as a member. Being affiliated with them does not give me any perks as a member, I call the same law firm as everyone else.

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  • 13 out 16 people found this review helpful

    Prompt knowledgable advice and response!

    No! I'm not a fake reviewer and not getting paid for it either! I've used their service twice now and both times received a call back the same day. One of those actually called back in a matter of MINUTES.

    Both lawyers treated me respectfully and almost as a friend, were extremely knowledgeable, and gave me step by step instructions and expectations and what the process will entail.

    My husband and I hired a regular lawyer (not through LegalShield) years ago, paid THOUSANDS and could never get callbacks or help when we needed it. We had to go to his OFFICE and refuse to leave until we spoke with him! And he couldn't wait to get us out of his office by his behavior. Talk about WASTING money! LegalShield IS LEGIT and has been a Godsend for us! A TRUE story of a couple in McKinney TX!

    If you don't 'click' with the lawyer you're assigned to, ask for another. It happens in any business. Our LegalShield lawyer has also instigated callbacks since we began our landlord issue and that tells me he's working on it. Not a scam! The second issue was resolved on the first immediate callback!

    I'm so tired of the bigger companies, government, and other entities that KNOW you can't afford a lawyer and will get away with taking advantage of the middle class who can't constantly afford lawyers, on issues that were no fault of our own. It's a helpless feeling. But no more! I just call my LegalShield attorney now, and it puts the accusers in their place ASAP!

    Thank you LegalShield!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 19 out 28 people found this review helpful

    They outright defrauded me

    • San Francisco, CA,
    • Mar 4, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    100% scam! They outright defrauded me out of hundreds of dollars. I paid hundreds of dollars to get a runaround and never receive any help at all. Then when I allowed my membership to lapse, they proactively called me and defrauded me out of my new credit card information to secretly start charging me hundreds more, on the sly, without ever giving me any help or even letting me know they had started charging me again.

    They called me to tell me my credit card was no good anymore (it had expired) and I told them yes, I had intentionally not given them my new billing information because I felt they had scammed me, I had never managed to get any legal help out of them and felt I had been ripped off. They asked about my legal problem and told me if I gave them my new billing info they could "try" to reinstate my account without my having to reapply and start over from scratch, and if so, they would then definitely help me with my legal issues. They made it clear that this was in no way definitely and that they'd get back to me.

    I then never heard anything from them again, they never contacted me again in any way, and I just forgot about them.

    About a year and a half later, I was going through my (long and complicated) financial records and noticed a small entry I had missed: they had used the new credit card information I had given them to start billing me monthly again almost immediately. They never told me they'd turned my account back on and they certainly never gave me the legal help they had at that point TWICE promised I would get for my money.

    When I discovered this and called them to complain and demand a refund for the close to $400 they had charged me without ever telling me I was a member again or providing the service they had promised, they said they would cancel my subscription, and when I demanded a refund for the money they had charged me since they tricked me into giving them my new credit card number, they told me they would have to forward me to someone who could help me with that, and put me on hold. They then forwarded me to a generic recorded message, which gave no useful information and then hung up on me.

    That was just a few months ago. I just now discovered they are STILL charging me after I told them in no uncertain terms to cancel and refund my money.

    I am reporting them for fraud to my bank, the Better Business Bureau, the Federal Trade Commission, and the CA State Bar Association.

    They did everything they could to prevent me from exercising my right to cancel, tricked me into giving them billing information after I told them I didn't want the service, refused to notify me that they had reactivated my "membership" and resumed billing me, absolutely never provided anything but a runaround, and not 1 second of help or service, ever.

    Stay far away!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 19, 2018

      Gabriel Toma

      Sorry to hear that David, for sure it was a misunderstanding. I've been a customer for almost year and the service saved me hundreds of dollars. I would get back to the person that sold it to you, and figure it out.

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  • 14 out 18 people found this review helpful

    You get what you pay for

    I was a member for ten years. I made the mistake of providing original documents to LegalShield for input regarding potential pension. I was told that they do not do that, so my irreplaceable original documents were put out with the trash. Hard lesson to learn!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 17 out 20 people found this review helpful

    Member for few years, have 2 legal issues, so far disappointed

    • San Jose, CA,
    • Feb 5, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I always paid my dues for a few years, and now when I need help, I am so disappointed and start reading all reviews so far. OMG, I better to not waste my time and money and hire a real attorney.

    So far, I am nowhere with Legal Shield attorneys. And I see how hard it is to cancel. I will see...Probably will get out soon.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 19 out 22 people found this review helpful

    I’m not impressed

    I’m not impressed with this service at all and am considering canceling my subscription. I had them in Florida, and I called about a dozen times for help. They were able to “help” me one time but never followed up in my case even after numerous phone calls and emails.

    I have them now in New York, I called for help once so far, and they couldn’t help me. I’m very disappointed and dissatisfied with their “services.” I wouldn’t bother subscribing, it's been a total waste of money in my opinion.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 16 out 35 people found this review helpful

    LegalShield is AMAZING! Member for 16 years.

    • California,
    • Nov 1, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    I highly recommend this company. My experiences are based on many years and countless conversations with attorneys at my law firm and other law firms in several different states. It is impossible for me to imagine not having this membership for me and my family. A vast amount and type of legal issues were handled for me. I am a small business owner, married, mother of 3 children.

    LegalShield has been there for me through many life issues and events. Such as, protection for my daughters when they went away to college, elder care, child custody, many documents reviewed, motor vehicle, consumer purchases, business start-up and development (more phone calls than I can count), mortgage loan advice, tax concerns, real estate questions, and much, much more. I have spent hours in consultation seeking advice, with conversations being as long as I needed to get my questions answered and develop a legal strategy.

    Not all attorneys are created equal, and I have learned that sometimes personalities may not match. If there is a problem ask to speak to another attorney, as I did two or three times in my 16 years. I have discovered there can be different legal approaches. More importantly, I think it is about managing my expectations and clearly communicating what outcomes I am looking to achieve. I call it managing my attorney, just like I would anyone invited into my home to do a job.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • Apr 16, 2018

      Mark

      This review appears to be a carefully crafted marketing piece by an obvious distributor of the product. Not a helpful review in my opinion.

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Showing 1-11 of 37

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