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Agreement Reached in LegalZoom Vs. Missouri

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) __ A possible agreement has been reached to settle a $5 million lawsuit against a vendor for online legal documents before the start of a trial scheduled to begin Monday in federal court in Missouri.

The class-action lawsuit claims California-based LegalZoom.com Inc. is not licensed to provide legal services in Missouri and is seeking reimbursement of three times what customers paid for the documents. It was filed by a Missouri resident who used LegalZoom to prepare a will, two others who used the service to organize a remodeling business and the business C Remodeling LLC.

LegalZoom was created about a decade ago and provides legal documents such as wills, trademarks and incorporation paperwork that are designed for the laws in each state. Customers answer questions online and the documents are created with computer software.

LegalZoom released a statement Monday saying a proposed settlement contains no admission of wrongdoing and would allow it to continue offering services in Missouri with certain changes to its business practices. The company said the terms were being negotiated and would be released after they’ve been approved by everyone involved in the case.

The company said the plaintiffs never asserted that the documents they purchased were defective. The firm said it continues to dispute the basis for the lawsuit, but the pending agreement would avoid a costly trial.

An attorney for the plaintiffs declined to discuss details of the proposed settlement with The Associated Press on Monday, but said the agreement involved compensation for Missouri consumers who have used LegalZoom and would include changes to the company’s business practices.

Copyright The Associated Press

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