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Retiree Group Legal Services Insurance Plan

The state offers a Retiree Group Legal Services Insurance Plan (Plan) to all eligible employees who retire from state service, and current retirees and annuitants. The Plan is an important part of the state's benefits package because it connects you with network attorneys and other legal resources to help you resolve life's legal issues.

Managing legal matters can be very confusing, time-consuming and costly, especially when you consider that attorney fees in the U.S. average $368 per hour.* As a member of the state's Retiree Group Legal Services Insurance Plan, you can face your problems with more confidence using the resources and services available to you.

Open Enrollment is September 21 – October 16

Open Enrollment for the Retiree Group Legal Services Insurance Plan will start September 21 and end October 16. During Open Enrollment eligible retirees can enroll in the Plan and current participants can change their plan coverage, and add or delete eligible dependents. If you're already enrolled in the Plan as a retiree, you do not need to re-enroll, as coverage continues automatically.

Eligible retirees will receive enrollment packets prior to September 21. If you don't receive a packet, please contact ARAG at (800) 511-4007.

2021 Premiums

Premiums will remain the same in 2021. 

  • Individual Coverage - $10.19
  • Family Coverage - $17.74 

Effective Date - Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment transactions will have a January 1, 2021, effective date.

How to Enroll during Open Enrollment

Eligible state retirees can enroll online by visiting ARAGlegal.com/socretiree and selecting the “Choose Retirement Plan", “View Plans", and “Enroll Now" tabs to enroll.

To enroll by phone, please contact ARAG Customer Care:

Monday-Friday, 5:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time
Toll-free (800) 511- 4007
TTY (800) 383-4184 (or 711 to reach a relay operator)

To enroll by mail or fax, complete the Group Legal Retiree Enrollment Authorization Form 200686 and mail or fax it to ARAG Insurance. Please retain a copy for your records.

Mail or fax completed forms to ARAG Insurance at:

ARAG Insurance Company
500 Grand Avenue Suite 100
De Moines, IA  50309-9958
Fax: (515) 246-8816

For more information, please contact Grouplegal@calhr.ca.gov.

Enrollment for Newly Eligible Retirees

Prior to retiring, your personnel office should provide you an enrollment packet if you wish to continue the Group Legal Services Insurance Plan into retirement. If you do not receive a packet, contact ARAG at (800) 511-4007 to request an enrollment packet. Follow the directions in your enrollment packet to enroll.

Upon retiring, you will have 60 days to elect to enroll. If you do not enroll upon retirement, you must wait until the next open enrollment period to enroll.

If you are enrolled in the Plan as an active employee, you must enroll in the retiree Plan within 60 days of retiring for your benefits to continue.  Your membership will not automatically continue into retirement.

Permitting Events

To enroll or change your coverage due to a permitting event (e.g., marriage, divorce, legal separation, child losing eligibility due to age or marriage, death of a spouse or child, primary member leaving state service, or a new domestic partner certification), you must submit an enrollment form within 60 days of the event.

To enroll or make changes by phone, please contact ARAG Customer Care:

Monday-Friday, 5:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time
Toll-free (800) 511- 4007
TTY (800) 383-4184 (or 711 to reach a relay operator)

To enroll or make changes by mail or fax, complete the Group Legal Retiree Enrollment Authorization Form 200686 and mail or fax it to ARAG Insurance. Please retain a copy for your records.

Mail or fax completed forms to ARAG Insurance at:

ARAG Insurance Company
500 Grand Avenue Suite 100
De Moines, IA  50309-9958
Fax: (515) 246-8816

For more information, please contact Grouplegal@calhr.ca.gov

How to Cancel

You may cancel your plan at any time by logging onto ARAGlegal.com/socretiree.

To cancel by phone, please contact ARAG Customer Care:

Monday-Friday, 5:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time
Toll-free (800) 511- 4007
TTY (800) 383-4184 (or 711 to reach a relay operator)

To cancel by mail or fax, complete the Group Legal Retiree Enrollment Authorization Form 200686 and mail or fax it to ARAG Insurance. Please retain a copy for your records.

Mail or fax completed forms to ARAG Insurance at:

ARAG Insurance Company
500 Grand Avenue Suite 100
De Moines, IA  50309-9958
Fax: (515) 246-8816

For more information, please contact Grouplegal@calhr.ca.gov.

Mandatory Deletions

It is your responsibility to inform ARAG Insurance of changes with your dependents or divorces.

The state has a Mandatory Deletion when an eligible dependent child marries or reaches age 26 (whichever is sooner) as they are no longer eligible for coverage under the insured retiree's plan. The retiree must complete a new enrollment form if they wish to change to individual coverage when the dependent child loses eligibility.

For legal separations, a deletion of the spouse cannot be done in anticipation of a pending or active divorce action or pending final divorce settlement.  When the divorce is finalized, the retiree must complete a new enrollment form to change their coverage to individual unless you have eligible dependent children on the Plan. 

Enrolled retirees who fail to initiate a mandatory deletion within 60 days of the permitting event date will not be reimbursed for the overpayment of premium nor will the carrier provide coverage for family members who no longer meet the eligibility requirement for dependents.

General Information

Covered Services

The Retiree Group Legal Services Insurance Plan is a voluntary, retiree-paid plan that provides comprehensive legal coverage. It is designed to meet the most common personal legal needs of an individual and their family. Covered services include:

100% Paid-in-Full Network Attorney Fees for Most Covered Matters, including Coverage for in-office Advice, Representation and Consultation

The Plan pays 100 percent of network attorney fees for most covered matters. Once you have enrolled in the Plan:

  • You'll receive a welcome kit containing information on how to access resources and network attorneys.
  • If you need to work with an attorney in the office, you have access to hundreds of California attorneys who belong to the ARAG attorney network. 
  • Network attorney fees for most covered matters are paid in full unless the Plan indicates the covered matter is subject to an hourly limit.
  • The Plan does not provide coverage for certain costs such as filing fees, reporters' fees, court reporters' fees, expert witness fees and other related expenses.
  • You also have the flexibility of using an attorney who is not part of the network. In this case, if the matter is covered by the Plan, you would file an indemnity claim for the attorney fees you paid and be reimbursed up to the amount specified in the Plan.

The Plan's covered services include, but are not limited to:

  • Will and trust preparation
  • Domestic matters (divorce, child support, custody, visitation, alimony, adoption)
  • Bankruptcy proceedings
  • Consumer protection
  • Defense of criminal misdemeanors
  • Debt collection
  • Buying or selling a home

The Plan also Includes Identity Theft Protection, Which Encompasses the Following Services:

  • Single-bureau credit monitoring
  • Internet surveillance
  • Identity theft insurance (up to $1 million**)
  • Full-service identity restoration
  • Lost wallet services
  • Change of address monitoring
  • Child identity monitoring

After enrolling, be sure to sign up for identity theft monitoring services by logging into your account at ARAGlegal.com/account.

  • Create a new member account or log in to your existing account.
  • On the member home page select Tools and then Identity Theft. Follow the Activate Monitoring prompts to create a new account to initiate online monitoring. Here you can also activate monitoring for family members that are covered by your plan.

Toll-free Telephone Legal Advice

The Plan also provides a convenient toll-free number - (800) 511-4007 - that gives the Plan member access to a telephone network attorney for legal advice on most personal legal issues (no limitation imposed on the number of calls or the length of the calls). These attorneys can also assist members with preparing and reviewing a simple will and other personal legal documents.

Note: Telephone consultation cannot be used for legal matters that are specifically excluded from the Plan (e.g., the Plan member cannot use the Plan for phone consultation regarding a grievance they have filed against the state). Telephone consultation service is available Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time.

Preventive Legal Services

For matters that are not specifically excluded, the Plan provides four hours annually that can be used for in-office advice, representation, or preventive services.

Other Legal Services

  • DIY Docs®: This is an online document creation tool with a variety of legally valid documents, including state-specific templates for wills, powers of attorney and more.  
  • Reduced-Fee Legal Services: If your matter is not fully covered and is not listed under "exclusions" in your Plan document, you are eligible to receive the reduced-fee benefit and work with a local network attorney who will provide legal services at a rate reduced by at least 25 percent off the network attorney's normal hourly rate. 
  • Reduced Contingency Fees: Network attorneys can represent you under a contingency fee arrangement. The fee paid to the attorney is based on the success of your case and is a percentage of the amount of money awarded. The Plan member is responsible for paying any costs.
  • Learning Center: All eligible retirees have access to an online collection of educational articles, informational guidebooks and short videos that provide helpful tips regarding timely legal and financial topics.
  • Mobile App: Provides a variety of tools, including searching for network attorneys, starting a will or traffic ticket case, and contacting ARAG. To install the app, visit the App Store (Apple) or Google Play (Android) and search for ARAG.

Exclusions

There are certain legal services that are specifically excluded from coverage in the Plan. Some of these services are as follows:

  1. Matters against us, the policyholder or an insured against the interests of the named insured under the same certificate.
  2. Legal services arising out of a business interest, investment interests, employment matters, employee benefits, your role as an officer or director of an organization, and patents or copyrights.
  3. Legal services in class actions, punitive damages, personal injury, malpractice, court appeals or post judgments (settlement agreement signed by all parties, final binding arbitration, judgment issued by a court).
  4. Legal services deemed by us to be frivolous or lacking merit, or in actions where you are the plaintiff and the amount we pay for your legal services exceeds the amount in dispute, or in our reasonable belief you are not actively and reasonably pursuing resolution in your case.

Premiums

The monthly premium is $10.19 for individual coverage and $17.74 for family coverage which covers you, your spouse or registered domestic partner, and any eligible dependent children.

Enrollment Forms

Group Legal Retiree Enrollment Authorization Form 200686

Contact Information

ARAG Insurance Company
500 Grand Avenue Suite 100
De Moines, IA  50309-9958

ARAG Customer Service:
Monday-Friday, 5:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time
Toll-free (800) 511-4007
TTY (800) 383-4184 (or 711 to reach a relay operator)

Website: ARAGlegal.com/SOCretiree

For more information, please contact Grouplegal@calhr.ca.gov

*"The Survey of Law Firm Economics: 2018 Edition." The National Law Journal and ALM Legal Intelligence, October 2018.

 ** The Identity Theft Insurance is underwritten and administered by American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida, an Assurant company. Please refer to the actual policies for terms, conditions, and exclusions of coverage. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions. Please see the plan summary document for details.

Limitations and exclusions apply. Depending upon a state's regulations, ARAG's legal insurance plan may be considered an insurance product or a service product. Insurance products are underwritten by ARAG Insurance Company of Des Moines, Iowa, GuideOne® Mutual Insurance Company of West Des Moines, Iowa or GuideOne Specialty Mutual Insurance Company of West Des Moines, Iowa. Service products are provided by ARAG Services, LLC. This material is for illustrative purposes only and is not a contract. For terms, benefits or exclusions, call (800) 511-4007.

  Updated: 9/23/2020
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