Verdict Is In: 47% of Workers are Dealing With Legal Matters While On the Job

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Marsha Fisher
marsha.fisher@workplaceoptions.com
800.699.8011 x 71428

Raleigh, N.C. (October 15, 2019)

Each year, employees of all ages face a variety of legal matters ranging from traffic citations to custody issues. A recent poll commissioned by Workplace Options found that one in four employees had personally been involved in a legal issue in the past three years. The poll also revealed that 47 percent had dealt with a legal situation, either their own or that of a friend or family member, while at work.

“Legal matters, whether involving the employee directly or one of their friends or family members, can have a significant impact on workplace productivity,” explains Dean Debnam, Chief Executive Officer at Workplace Options. “This can be in terms of absenteeism, when employees have to miss work to take care of a legal matter; or presenteeism when employees are working distracted, due to the stress associated with a legal matter.”

In Workplace Options’ poll, of those employees who were personally involved in a legal issue, 92 percent said the situation caused at least some amount of stress, with 33 percent reporting they found the situation to be very stressful.

In terms of absenteeism, 34 percent of employees polled reported they had to take time off from work to deal with a legal matter. Of those, 31 percent said they missed one full workday and 26 percent said they missed multiple workdays.

Workplace Options’ poll also found:

  • 26 percent of employees polled had dealt with a legal situation during the workday without notifying their employers.
  • This is a 53 percent increase since last year, when a June 2018 poll commissioned by Workplace Options found that 17 percent of employees reported they had dealt with a legal situation during the workday without notifying their employer.
  • 36 percent of employees polled knew of a coworker or colleague who had dealt with a legal matter during work without notifying the employer.
  • This is a 44 percent increase from the 2018 poll, where 25 percent of employees polled reported they knew of a coworker or colleague who had dealt with a legal matter during work without notifying the employer.

“Employees should check with their Employee Assistance Provider (EAP) to find out if any legal assistance resources are offered,” shares Debnam. “Not only can EAPs address the stress associated with legal issues, they may also be able to connect employees with attorneys for a free consultation. In some situations, EAPs offer access to a library of legal articles and self-help legal forms.”

According to Debnam, access to these resources may help minimize employees’ stress and potentially reduce the amount of time they spend away from the office.

The national poll was conducted by Public Policy Polling on August 8-11, 2019, and is based on responses from 556 working Americans. The margin of error is +/- 4.2 percent. Full results are available HERE. For more information about Workplace Options, visit www.workplaceoptions.com or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.

For more information about Workplace Options, visit www.workplaceoptions.com or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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About Workplace Options

Workplace Options helps employees balance their work, family and personal needs to become healthier, happier and more productive, both personally and professionally. The company’s world-class employee support, effectiveness and wellbeing services provide information, resources, referrals and consultation on a variety of issues ranging from dependent care and stress management to clinical services and wellness programs.

Drawing from an international network of credentialed providers and professionals, Workplace Options is the world’s largest integrated employee support and work-life services provider. Service centers in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Ireland, Portugal, France, Belgium, UAE, Singapore, Japan, China, India and Indonesia support more than 58 million employees across 90,000 organizations and more than 200 countries and territories. To learn more, visit www.workplaceoptions.com.