Public Legal

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Public Legal

Offers personal and business legal services

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Public Legal is a privately held subsidiary of Maximilian Ventures, LLC. The company was founded in 2003 and is based out of Wilmington, DE. Besides its legal form business, Maximilian Ventures works exclusively with talented Internet entrepreneurs, providing legal services. Their firm's areas are primarily online services for businesses and legal consumers. Public Legal helps organizations throughout stages of their business development, including investments and buyouts. If your company needs assistance, Maximilian provides operational expertise, financial support, industry expertise, and access to legal best practices.

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The Good

  • Services
  • Affordable Forms
  • Business Forms Available
  • Educational Resources
  • Real Estate and Rental Paperwork 

Services

Public Legal is essentially an online marketplace to buy personal and business legal forms. There are several thousand legal documents in their library and they also have a listing of legal professionals to provide business and personal legal counsel. Additionally, there are also resource links to find articles and other case studies that are currently happening in law. In addition to the document library, there are also links for investigating law schools if you are looking for a law degree program as a law student.

Affordable Forms

There are several useful forms on the website. They are pretty affordable starting at a free price for some of the more general forms. Also, you can download and reuse a form as many times as you'd like after you purchase it.

Business Forms Available

If you are starting a business, there are a few resources for getting an LLC up and running, such as articles of business and joint venture agreements. These forms are drafted for each of the different states in the United States.

Educational Resources

The Public Legal website is also a great resource for doing legal research. In addition to information for potential law students who might want to apply for law school, there are links to online legal journals and other resources. Prospective users can also take advantage of LawRunner, which has access to more than 3+ billion archived web pages.

Real Estate and Rental Paperwork

For example, there is a deed of trust available for $9.99. In addition, there are several other documents for landlord and tenant relationships, including evictions and rental agreements.

The Bad

  • Poor Website Navigation 
  • Lack of Customer Support 
  • Form Types and Descriptions
  • Storage Subscription

While there are a number of features and services that will assist users in their legal endeavors, there are also a number of limitations to the platform as a whole. These disadvantages can create problems for prospective users and include:

Poor Website Navigation

The platform is extremely dependent upon links for navigation. There is a search option, but it often doesn't rank the most useful legal forms for each type of legal situation. The links make it hard to find the right form for your legal situation on the website.

Lack of Customer Support

There is an "email us" link, but there is not a toll-free number. This could be problem if you are trying to download your purchased form and have trouble getting the actual document. The website claims that they will pay $50 to any customer who can prove that a form is not compliant in a state. However, if they don't list a toll-free number, a customer might not be able to claim their money.

Form Types and Descriptions

The website claims to offer a whole bunch of free forms, but there is no way to determine which forms were free and which ones cost. This is problematic because it can be difficult to find any of the "free" forms. The website also doesn't really offer a good preview of its forms. The "free preview" of the forms are limited to HTML text that is directly written on the pages of the website. Some of the forms were $9.99 or more.

Storage Subscription

There currently is no resource or feature that includes a subscription for storage. Other platforms provide this service, for instance, including option to pay $4.99 to store your documents in a cloud. Public Legal doesn't offer storage at this time.

The Bottom Line

There are better options out there for legal document use than Public Legal. There is simply not enough support on the website to help customers select the legal forms that they might need for a particular situation. Every form that listed had a price tag attached to it. To find the free forms, these should be indicated as such in the directory. There are some good research listings on the website. This is a great resource for investigating potential law schools if you are interested in furthering your education. In addition, there is a listing to the top 250 law firms within the United States. Here, it is possible to find legal help for actually using the forms. Also, the website is too heavily driven by web links. You have to go pretty deep into the website to find the form that you are looking for. In addition, the form directory is pretty hard to navigate. Finally, there should be a preview of the forms in their actual format, such as a Word file or PDF, rather than just embedding a sample of a form in the web page as HTML text.

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