Online Legal Services FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions about Online Legal Services
- How do online legal services work?
- What services do legal sites provide?
- Are the government fees included in the price?
- Do the services file the paperwork for you?
- Can I get a personal lawyer from a legal service site?
- Can these legal service sites provide me with a courtroom lawyer?
- How did NextAdvisor test these legal services?
Search our site for more information about Online Legal Services:
Legal service sites specialize in legal documents and forms. Most services offer both an option to download legal forms, as well as preparation services where the site will fill out the forms and file them for you. In most cases, the site will ask you a series of questions to help prepare a personalized form that you can either have them file or that you can download and file yourself. Many of the sites also offer legal advice or will connect you with lawyers you can answer your legal questions.
This greatly depends on the site, but all of the sites we review at least provide options for incorporating a business and filing a trademark request. In addition, many sites also offer a wide range of options, from wills to power of attorney to real estate forms to divorces. US Legal Forms has the largest list of forms to download, so if you have an obscure legal issue, their site is a good place to start.
No. The pricing for all legal services sites does not include any official filing fees, although the services will add those fees to your total when it is time to check out, so you know how much you will be paying. In many cases, the filing fees are much costlier than what the sites charge to fill out the forms, so make sure you check how much the fees are to get a better idea of how much you will be paying.
It depends on the service. Many sites have the option of filing paperwork for the more complicated options, such as incorporating a business, but only provide downloadable documents for things like wills and power of attorney. Sites like LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer can file a good majority of the documents and forms they feature on your behalf.
Many of the sites have legal advisers on hand to answer any legal questions you may have, but it usually costs extra to get said legal advice. Rocket Lawyer can connect you to lawyers in your area for 40% off when you become a member of their site. LegalZoom also offers unlimited legal advice for $14.95/month, which is nice if you need continued legal help.
It's important to note that the sites themselves aren't legal experts and their customer service options will not be able to offer you legal advice.
Legal service sites mainly deal with legal documents and forms. They don't offer options for criminal cases and rarely give legal advice in those cases. But sites like Rocket Lawyer, which provides services that connect you with lawyers in your area, should be able to help you find a local lawyer who might be able to help.
We focused on two of the most popular services: forming a business and registering a trademark. We walked through the interface for each and answered all the questions to receive our own personalized document for each category. In addition, we tested all the general areas of the sites, which included downloading documents, accessing the forums, reading any advice articles and walking through as many different services as we could. We also tested each of the different customer service options, asking both technical and legal questions to each of the services.
Our reviews and rankings are based on many key components of each site. First and foremost, we looked at how use-friendly is the site, including the ease of the interface and how simple it was to find the information any user would need. Secondly, we looked at how many features the sites offered, including number and range of documents and forms as well as other helpful features that were included. Lastly, we looked at the customer service options in both technical and legal advice. We asked questions on how the site worked as well as legal questions about business-related questions we had. We ranked the sites based on the combination of all of these tests.
Disclosure: NextAdvisor.com is a consumer information site that offers free, independent reviews and ratings of online services. We receive advertising revenue from most of the services we review. Our editors thoroughly research and whenever possible test each service we review and offer their honest opinions about each one. We are independently owned and operated and all opinions expressed on this site are our own.