Employer-employee disagreements happen all the time. While some disputes can arise from minor misunderstandings, others can be due to an employer’s ill intent. Either way, these disputes can affect you as the employee unfavorably, often making your life uncomfortable.
For instance, if your employer fires you abruptly without offering you a worthy severance package, you could have a rough couple of months when job hunting. In the absence of a reasonable severance package, you might struggle to pay for expenses like loans, mortgages, and utility bills – that is, until you land another job.
Many situations could justify hiring an employment lawyer, including sexual harassment, wage issues, workplace discrimination, family and medical leave issues, and non-compliance to workplace health and safety regulations. With the help of an employment lawyer, navigating the legal environment when negotiating with your employer or suing them becomes easy. Lawyers understand the ins and out of employment law, and can leverage common loopholes to ensure you get compensated the right way.
Here is what you should know about employment law:
How Can Hiring An Employment Lawyer Help You?
It can be easy to get confused by all the legal jargon and proceedings around employment law. There are various state and federal laws your employer needs to comply with, and knowing the laws yours broke is essential. Working with employment lawyers will help you know how to argue out your case.
The lawyer can walk you through the legal premise of your current situation and provide accurate information that will give you an edge. The fact that they understand the claim process also reduces the chances of you losing your case over a technicality. For anyone new to the employment law proceedings, it can be hectic to handle processes like compiling the right documentation, interviewing the witnesses, and submitting documents before the deadline.
How Much Will You Need To Pay For The Services?
Different lawyers will charge differently for employment law disputes. the amount you pay your employment lawyer will depend on factors like:
- The amount of time your case takes up
- The experience and reputation of the lawyer
- The lawyer’s ability to take on the case
- The cost involved throughout the case
- The level of challenge the whole case comes with
Most lawyers follow a few common fees and cost structures. You could have to pay:
- Consultation fees: Many lawyers will charge for the initial consultation, either at a fixed price or on an hourly basis. During the initial meeting, you will discuss your case’s premise and whether the lawyer will handle it. It is wise to confirm whether you will need to pay a consultation fee beforehand.
- Contingency fees: Most lawyers will take a percentage of your compensation in the form of contingency fees. This means that they won’t get paid this fee if you don’t recover any compensation. Some lawyers will use a sliding scale when determining the appropriate contingency fee for the cases they handle, though the court does limit the amount lawyers can receive as contingency fees.
- Hourly rates and flat fees: Flat fees are typically a pre-determined fee for handling a case, and will mostly apply in minor disputes. On the other hand, your lawyer might charge an hourly rate based on the time they spend on your case. More experienced attorneys will charge more per hour than younger lawyers and paralegals.
How To Pick The Right Lawyer
First of all, you need to pick a lawyer who deals with employment law, instead of general law. Employment law is complex, and it keeps changing, according to the HKM Law Firm, which is why having someone who specializes in it is essential. Next, you should ensure that the lawyer is a state bar member since state laws differ between states and even municipalities.
Having a lawyer who is familiar with your geographic area will ensure you are in good hands. Lastly, you should assess the experience and reviews of the lawyer. A reputable lawyer or law firm will have cases they have won to back up their claims. They will also have great reviews online, or from clients they have helped.
How To Strengthen Your Employment Law Case
Above everything else, you should be calm and collected, even when being confronted. Lashing out or doing anything that portrays you in bad light can work against you. Your employer can use this behavior in a lawsuit to discredit your case. Regardless of whether you are experiencing a hostile work environment or have been unlawfully fired, stay calm.
Instead, you should use your time to record information and collect documentation. Making prompt and written complaints to the HR department is essential before you can consider filing a lawsuit, especially in the case of workplace harassment or discrimination. Be sure to retain a copy of these complaints.