Given all of the discrimination cases heard by the EEOC every year, over 60% of all discrimination based firings have to do with race or gender.
When people are wrongfully terminated, harassed, or not hired due to their identity, things can become litigious. If you don’t know the full scope of the law, however, you could feel like you’re grasping at straws without the help of an employment attorney.
If you’re in the midst of an employment issue, here are 5 ways an attorney can help you.
1. They Know The Local Laws
If you’re in a tough situation with your employer, you might not know what your rights are. You might feel that something is being violated but not be sure exactly what it is yet. You’ll need someone who can shepherd you through the labyrinth of the law to understand what’s going on.
An employment attorney is knowledgeable and experienced in all matters relating to employment. They can let you know what the lawful terms for termination are and when employers commonly violate them. Even if it’s unclear, a good attorney can make a case for why laws were violated.
If you work in a different region or state than where you live, different laws will apply. Make sure you hire an attorney who is near where you were working. They will know what is legal in the state they’re located better than they’ll know about neighboring states.
Local laws and statutes can vary depending on where the headquarters of a business is located. Some businesses will avoid basing their business in areas with more protections for employees. Be aware of this before you begin the pursuit of your case.
2. They Can Hire Expert Witnesses
An experienced attorney knows how and where to find expert witnesses. People who are well-versed in the standards and practices of your industry could come in handy when the details of your employment get called into question.
Your employer might have been violating a law that they’d seen other business owners violate and which other people may have come to regard as common practice.
That shouldn’t defend them from being responsible for breaking laws.
If you suffered any kind of injury on the job, your attorney can help you to find an expert medical professional to testify on your behalf. They will be able to explain to a judge or to a jury how injuries like yours function and can hinder the ability to work. Having them in your corner will help lend validity in the face of a skeptical group of your peers.
If you’re wondering what else an attorney can offer during your trial, take the time to learn more.
3. They Know Employment Contracts
Your employment attorney will be able to comb through the details of your employment contract. They’ll know whether or not your contract has validity and should be considered legal. Despite the fact that employers will often hire lawyers to put together these contracts, they don’t always do a very good job.
If you are in the midst of renegotiating your contract, you might find some statutes added that put you in a vulnerable position.
They could be changing the terms of your employment in a way that isn’t favorable to you and might not even be legal. An employment attorney will suss this out for you.
Before you sign any contract, you should have an employment attorney look it over first. They can find any holes in your employer’s proposed contract and let you know what to look out for. While your employer might not have malicious intent, their haphazard approach could push your employment onto the razor’s edge of legality.
Things like non-compete clauses have become a common standard in employment contracts but they can go too far and even violate your civil rights.
4. They Know How And When To File Discrimination
You might not be sure whether or not you’re being discriminated against, but if you suspect that’s the case, time is of the essence. You only get a 180-day window for filing an EEOC discrimination claim. After that, your ability to get a fair judgment could be compromised.
Whether you’re dealing with gender, racial, or sexual discrimination or harassment, an attorney knows the right solution.
Having an attorney on your side can help you to guide which details are most important and which aren’t for informing your case. They know how to properly fill out all of the paperwork and to ensure that it’s sent out on time.
Without a properly filed form or by sending one in too late, you might end up forfeiting your ability to speak up. An employment attorney will take these claims seriously enough to ensure they don’t make a simple mistake like this.
5. They Can Represent You In Court
If your employment case ends up being seen in front of a jury, you’ll need all of the help you can get. Every year, millions of people try to go to court without the help of a lawyer and they often lose miserably. If your work or your ability to work is on the line, you can’t take this situation lightly.
While defending yourself will help to save you money, you might quickly get in over your head. Representing yourself in a case where you don’t fully understand the limits of the law is the best way to lose.
Ensure you can win by hiring an attorney.
Just having a lawyer on your side will show your employer that you’re serious about the case. If they know they don’t have a strong case and you show up with a lawyer, they’ll be looking to settle as quickly and painlessly as possible.
An Employment Attorney Can Light the Way
Without the aid of an employment attorney, you might feel hopeless about your ability to resolve your employment issue. Thankfully an attorney can not only advise you on the case but also give you personal advice on how to deal with the emotional frustration you have.
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