Hire an Employment Lawyer
If you are involved in an employment dispute you may need to hire an employment lawyer. An effective employment lawyer can help you understand state and federal laws concerning wrongful termination, wage disputes, defamation, whistleblower protections, and other employment-related matters.
Knowing when to contact or hire an employment lawyer can make the difference between recovering lost time, money, and damages, and never getting compensated for your loss. Below is important information you need to know about hiring an employment lawyer.
Why You Need an Employment Lawyer
An employment lawyer can represent workers in employment disputes. Employment-related matters include:
- Workplace discrimination
- Sexual harassment
- Wage and benefit disputes
- Workplace health and safety
- Wrongful termination
- Family and medical leave
- Unemployment compensation
These issues often lead to employment disputes between an employer and an employee. For instance, when an employee files a complaint of discrimination, harassment, or some other violation, an employer may become the subject of a litigation claim. Employment lawyers can also help employers with union problems or labor disputes.
Similarly, when an employer is faced with reducing the workforce, modifying employee contracts, or addressing employee misbehavior, an employee is often put on the defensive and forced to defend their employee rights.
An employment lawyer can review the merits of a complaint and advise you on the next course of action, including whether to negotiate a settlement or litigate in court. Your employment attorney can also help protect you against further employment dispute claims.
While not every employment matter requires the help of an employment lawyer, there are some employment issues that are particularly challenging. Complex employment claims may require legal expertise, especially those which affect lost wages, mental health, retirement benefits, and job security.
An employment lawyer can advise employers on how to proceed with an employee termination, review employee handbooks, and review company policy. An employment attorney can also help with OSHA regulations and employee training. Employment laws are constantly changing and an experienced employment attorney can advise you on any new changes in the law that might significantly affect your case.
What to Look For in an Employment Lawyer
Employment lawyers handle a wide variety of employment matters affecting the employer/employee relationship, including breach of contract, severance disputes, and confidentiality issues, among other things. When looking for an employment lawyer, you should focus on the lawyer's experience, skill level, knowledge, and fee structure.
In addition, the employment lawyer will have a method to stay abreast of the current state and federal labor laws and regulations and be familiar with various federal agency rules and organizations such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and several others.
Lastly, a good employment lawyer should explain his or her fee arrangement upfront to avoid any misunderstandings with lawyer billing and other costs, and discuss a timeline of when and how resolution might occur.
How to Find an Employment Lawyer
There are numerous ways to find a qualified employment lawyer to handle your case. Referrals from friends, family, or other attorneys may be a good start. You can also check with local bar associations or legal aid clinics that often refer people to lawyers who may assist in employment-related matters, sometimes as a free consultation.
You may wish to find a local employment lawyer using a quality-assured lawyer directory, like FindLaw. This provides a simple way to connect you to an experienced employment lawyer in your area. Before meeting with your employment attorney, be sure to find out about any consultation fees.
Questions to Ask an Employment Lawyer
Before selecting an employment lawyer, you should consider talking to more than one qualified attorney who may assess your situation. Below are some of the questions you should ask before hiring an employment lawyer.
- What are the options for settlement or taking the case to trial?
- How much of your practice is devoted to handling employment matters similar to mine?
- What is the process for staying updated on the current laws and regulations?
- How much of my case will you actually handle or will it be passed off to other associates?
- What is your fee arrangement?
Employment Lawyer Fees
The cost to pursue an employment claim varies from state to state and from attorney to attorney. Most employment law attorneys charge a small consultation fee during the initial interview. Depending on the nature of the claim and other factors, an employment lawyer may offer a variety of fee structures, including hourly rate, contingency basis, or a prepaid retainer. It's important that you clarify the fee arrangement with your employment lawyer upfront to avoid any potential misunderstandings later on.
Contact an Employment Lawyer
If you're feeling overwhelmed with an employee rights issue or wrongful job loss it can be helpful to consult with an experienced lawyer. They can answer questions about your specific situation and discuss how the local, state, and federal laws impact your potential claims. Contact a local attorney to learn how they can help you demand fair treatment at work.
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