How to Choose an Employment Lawyer That’s Right for You

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Finding an employment lawyer can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve never needed one before. Employment law often involves multiple issues and can be complicated, so finding an attorney who is not only good at the law but also personable can be difficult. Here are some simple steps to help you choose an employment lawyer that’s right for you.

Qualities of a Good Employment Lawyer


Employment lawyers are specialized legal professionals. When searching for one, consider these important factors: Expertise: This refers to both experience and education. Experience is key when selecting a lawyer because you want someone who knows how to handle your case from beginning to end.

Education can be a helpful indicator of expertise, but it isn’t always necessary. Location: An employment law attorney can either work with you directly or provide support by representing you in court.

Experience


Make sure you go with a lawyer who is experienced in representing employees. Look at their experience and make sure they’ve worked on similar cases as yours.

Try asking other people you know who have used lawyers in your area what kind of results they had. If possible, talk to some of your potential lawyer’s clients directly so you can get honest feedback about how things went.

Credibility


Lawyers aren’t cheap, so it makes sense that you’d want a lawyer who knows his or her way around employment law, who will look out for your interests and guide you through a potential dispute.

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But how do you find that person? How do you know what kind of legal experience they have? And when interviewing potential lawyers, how do you decide which one is right for your business? This comprehensive guide can help. Here are six questions to ask before hiring a lawyer.

Reputation


Some employment lawyers are generalists, while others have a specialty. When choosing a lawyer, it’s essential that you select one who is knowledgeable about your type of situation. Do your research and check out online reviews to see what other clients have said about their experience with various law firms.

Affordable Fees


The cost of employing a lawyer varies, depending on where you live and how much work you need to be done. To find a lawyer that’s right for you, research how much similar cases have cost others.

Since employment law is often regulated at the state or provincial level, it’s important to be familiar with your area’s laws. It will also make hiring a local attorney more practical as they know their way around your specific area of law.

Understanding of your unique situation


Many employment lawyers limit their practice based on employer type or industry, so it’s critical to ensure that your attorney is familiar with your situation. Find out what areas of law they specialize in and whether they have experience handling cases involving similar industries or employers.

If you don’t know where to start, ask yourself what legal issues you expect will most impact your business—dealing with a disgruntled employee? Have a need for contract review? Contract negotiation?

Ability to communicate in a way you understand


Lawyers must be good communicators, but your comfort level and ease with a particular lawyer are even more important. The first time you meet with a prospective employment lawyer, ask yourself if you think he or she will be able to understand you.

For example, can you imagine being able to describe your concerns about your job without being dismissed as a whiner? If not, perhaps it’s time to find someone else. This is especially true if English isn’t your native language.

Reputation within the industry


It’s important that your employment lawyer is well-known and respected within their industry. There are thousands of employment lawyers out there, so it’s likely you will have a few options in your area. Check with colleagues, as well as your local Chamber of Commerce. They should be able to refer you to somebody who can handle your matter from start to finish.

Personal approachability and availability


More importantly, find a lawyer who is personable and accessible. These will be qualities that you value in your personal relationships—why would you settle for less from someone who will be dealing with some of your most sensitive issues? This doesn’t mean that you should choose a lawyer on a personality level (remember: remain objective), but it does mean that after speaking with several lawyers, you should pick one based on his/her availability and perceived willingness to communicate with you personally.