Legal Life Events in the Workplace

by Kevin K. Johnson, Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®

Earlier this year ARAG commissioned a study to understand and quantify the impact that legal life events are having at the workplace. The most common legal life events are:
  1. Purchase or lease of automobile
  2. Hire contractors for work on residence
  3. CARE FOR AGING FAMILY MEMBER
  4. Experience credit trouble or debt collection
  5. Deal with death of immediate family member
  6. Create or update financial plan
  7. Receive ticket for moving violation
  8. Rent apartment
  9. Sell Auto
  10. Refinance house

The study found that an increasing number of people are experiencing legal life events in the past year, and, among those, an increasing number are going through four or more a year. And that’s not the worst part: The number of people of who experienced a life change like home construction, care for an aging family member, or having a death in the family, and admitted it impacted them at work, is also on the rise.

A study conducted by Russell Research finds that 74% — nearly three out of four – Americans dealt with a legal life event in the past year, up from 69% in 2007. Out of those, 40% went through four or more such events, up from 28% five years ago.

In 2007, 45% of those who experienced such an event in their lives reported that it had an effect at their place of work, but this year the scales have tipped and that number has hit 55%.

According to Dennis Healy, a vice president of group sales at ARAG. “If somebody’s got to go out and find a solution on their own … they don’t have any choice but to deal with it at work”. “If they’re not versed, they’re going to spend a lot of time.”

In the past year, those who experienced a legal life event spent an average of 17 hours at work and took an average of 9.5 days off dealing with the issue.

“If they have to deal with it, they have to deal with it,” Healy says. “These things won’t just go away.”

According to the study’s findings, care of an aging family member is now the most common family related legal life event. Today, 65.7 million people, or 31% of all households, are caregivers, providing on average 20 hours of care per week.

“Americans are asking for help,” says ARAG CEO David Murray. “The anemic economy and mortgage crisis, increased consumer fraud and higher prevalence of eldercare have become silent killers of workplace effectiveness.”

Caring Concierge is singularly focused on helping employers minimize the significant lost workplace productivity (in total over $33 billion per year in the United States) that results when their employees are faced with eldercare issues.

ARAG is a global provider of legal solutions focused on:

  • Education and Empowerment
  • Planning and Prevention
  • Resolution and Protection
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