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FindLaw's New Legal Planning Tools Keep You Ahead of the Curve

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By Steven Tanner on September 10, 2013 3:50 PM

Life is unpredictable. Bad things happen to the best of us, often when we least expect it; our legal system is designed to handle many of these incidents after they occur.

But guess what? Life can also be very predictable in many ways. All of us will eventually get old and die, for instance -- hopefully with a valid will in place. Most of us will pay federal income taxes, and many of us will get married, apply for a credit card, adopt a child, or get divorced. Some of us might even start a small business.

When someone plows into the back of your car, FindLaw.com can help you figure out what to do next. But we know you're savvy and would like to avoid legal predicaments whenever possible. That's what our new Legal Planning section is all about.

Planning for Every Stage of Your Life

Our Legal Planning portal is organized into life stages: Young & Single, Newly Married, Married with Children, Middle Years, and Retirement. Life can get legal in any one of these stages.

From simple things like cohabitation agreements among couples who move in together to major life decisions like structuring a will, we really wanted to present all the ways that consumers can and should plan during your various life stages.

Much of the content is pulled from our extensive Learn About the Law section, while our "Legal How-To" series of blog entries provides additional practical advice for non-attorneys. As FindLaw.com is already the Internet's No. 1 source of consumer legal information, we wanted to offer a new way for users to take control of their lives.

Newsletter Gives You a 'Heads-Up'

"We thought we could take a proactive approach," said Content Marketing Specialist John Karbaf, who is helping to promote the new section through the new Legal Heads-Up newsletter (click on the link to subscribe for free). "This will focus mostly on things consumers may not necessarily think about, but which definitely affect them on a daily basis."

The Legal Heads-Up newsletter is divided into four sections: Need to Know; Planning; Family Matters; and Career & Home. The Need to Know section, for instance, will include product recalls, changes in the law, and other alerts that will help you stay ahead of the curve. The Family Matters section, meanwhile, will cover issues such as adoption and truancy laws.

To give an example of why we think this is so critical, a FindLaw.com survey earlier this year found that only 35 percent of Americans have a will. "Yet we would venture to guess that very few Americans would like the state or other outsiders to dictate how their estate and possessions are divided without their input," said Kevin Ahlvin, FindLaw's Director of Audience and the main force behind the new Legal Planning section.

So remember, while life is full of surprises that we simply cannot predict, we can at least count on the inevitability of death and taxes (for starters), and plan ahead in order to avoid legal headaches down the road. Check out our new Legal Planning section and our new Legal Heads-Up newsletter, and then tell us what you think on Facebook or Twitter.

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