If you are an employee you may sometimes have a work-related issue. There is nothing to worry about: it is normal. But when you feel you have a really serious dispute with your employer, you, probably, will need an employment lawyer (also called an employment benefits lawyer). You may hire a lawyer when you feel an age discrimination or harassment. The lawyer will help you to protect your rights. Knowing when to hire an attorney can help you to save your time, money and nerves. But before hiring a lawyer you have lots of things to do, like finding a good lawyer, collecting required documents, learning about the prices, etc. This article can be your guide while looking for a good lawyer.
What is an employment lawyer’s function?
First of all, let us tell you what employment lawyers do. There are federal, state, and local employment laws to ensure fair treatment for employees. Employment attorneys might write and review employee handbooks, assist with wage law issues and claims. Employment lawyers handle a broad variety of employment issues affecting the employer-employee relationship, including breach of contract. While looking for an employment lawyer, you should take into account the lawyer’s experience, knowledge, skill level and fee structure. Good employment lawyers should explain their fee arrangements beforehand in order to avoid any misunderstanding. They should also discuss a timeline of when and how resolution might occur.
How to find an employment lawyer?
There are a lot of ways to find a qualified employment lawyer for your case. Hiring your friends’, relatives’ attorneys may be a good idea. You can also search for a local lawyer with positive comments on the internet. You should organize a meeting with several qualified attorneys who may assess your situation. During that meeting, you may ask the lawyers some questions about how many likewise cases they had, or about their fees.
Do an online research
When you feel it is high time to hire a lawyer, take your notebook and search for some local attorneys. Find lawyers’ websites and read their bios. See if there are certain types of cases they handle. Read the comments about their work.
Contact your state bar association
While looking for an employment lawyer, connecting to your state bar association and asking for a referral is a good idea to start. They will provide you with the list of law firms which have been certified by the state bar.
Check for board certification
Board Certification is a voluntary designation program for attorneys. Initial certification is valid for a period of five years. To remain certified, an attorney must apply for recertification every five years and meet substantial involvement, peer review and continuing legal education requirements for the specialty area.
Prepare for an interview with your lawyer
When you have finally chosen the attorney, prepare a list of questions to ask the lawyer in order to find out who is going to handle your case. You need this interview to realize if he/she fits you or not. Ask the lawyer how long he/she has been practicing law. You can ask whether your attorney takes cases to trial. Also, ask about how he/she is going to charge you. Some lawyers may not charge you anything until they win your case. Another question you may ask is: how often you should contact him/her. Find out if your lawyer prefers communicating via emails, phone calls, or other means of communication. You may find answers to your questions even from your lawyer’s website.
Prepare for the consultation
Some law firms usually offer a free consultation, whereas others may charge you an hourly fee. So, it is better to prepare well before you meet the lawyer. Before that meeting collect all the relevant documents, facts, dates on what happened and when. Your lawyer will need these facts as evidence in the court. During the consultation pay attention to how the lawyer answers your questions. Do not trust the attorney who gives too many promises.
So, if you are involved in a dispute with your employer, or you just need advice about work-related matters, you might hire an employment lawyer. But hiring an employment lawyer for any purpose may be a challenging process. You should pay attention to the lawyer’s knowledge, skills, experience and fee structure. Do research and find a good lawyer who will fit you. We hope we helped you. Good luck with your search.