Employment laws throughout the country ensure that a fair workplace environment is provided to all employees. Equal opportunities are to be given to employees according to the law. However, it is still possible for employers to discriminate against employees based on their gender, religion, sexuality or political affiliation.
If you have suffered a setback at work and are feeling stress out, then chances are that you have already researched the legal problem to figure out that the guidance of an experienced employment attorney is what you need. But, when you search online for employment lawyers, the results might be overwhelming. Finding the right lawyer might seem impossible. That is why this guide will help you select an employment attorney to protect your rights.
Find a Lawyer That Specializes In Employment Law
There are professional rules of conduct and ethics in place which prevent attorneys from claiming that they are specialized. It means that one cannot find a directory for employment attorneys by looking at the website of a professional licensing body. Many private directories can be used as they list lawyers according to their specialization. Some of the most popular directories can be found on Nolo.com, Avvo.com, and Nela.org.
Choose a Lawyer That Practices In your State or Area
Find a lawyer that has passed the bar in your state. Normally, lawyers post on their websites, the states where they have passed the bar. A lawyer that practices in your area offer convenience and an attorney barred in your state is ideal. It means that you can easily visit their office to discuss employment issues. Depending on how long the case lasts, you will need to visit the employment attorney’s office several times. However, proximity is not necessary as attorneys often appear in states where they have not been barred by filing a motion to appear for a single case before the court. So, if you are interested in contracting an attorney that does not live in your area, let him/ her know exactly where you live and work. It will allow the lawyer to determine quickly whether he or she would be able to appear in your state.
Avoid Attorneys That Do Not Have Employment Law As Primary Area of Practice
You need to choose a lawyer who can protect your rights and seek justice on your behalf. Although most lawyers have a practice which involves employment law in some way, you must contact an employment attorney such as a Manhattan NY Employment Attorney to help you.
Sometimes, it is possible for an attorney who handles employment law among other fields to just fine. But, having an employment attorney on board means that you get someone who devotes most of his time dealing with employment law. The attorney would be more experienced in handling employment issues and will be able to guide you accordingly. Employment law is a complicated field as the law is changing every single day and it is the responsibility of the employment attorney to stay updated with all the relevant laws.
Find an Attorney that Mostly Represents Employees
Employment attorneys either represent employers or employees. If you search on Google for an employment lawyer, both management and employee lawyers will pop up. You might find a lawyer that represents both parties, but often, they would pick one side over the other.
Ask the lawyer whether he or she represents employees or employers most of the time. It will help provide you with an idea about the attorney and his or her experience dealing with employee-related issues. Keep in mind that attorneys that represent employees tend to have smaller firms or work as a solo practitioner.
Find an Attorney Experienced With Your Specific Situation
Employment law deals with a range of situations. Even though most employment lawyers deal with a wide range of situations, it is still important to choose a lawyer who specializes or has experience in dealing with similar employment-related issues. Some specialize in dealing with sexual harassment claims and some that deal with LGBTQ-related issues where the employer discriminates against the employee based on their sexual identity.
Moreover, certain lawyers only take on cases that interest them. Some employment attorneys focus on equal pay, workplace safety, and meal break violations. Find a lawyer who has specific expertise in dealing with matters that are similar to your case. Ask lawyers about their previous cases and find out if they represented employees with similar issues.
Check Out Their Marketing
One of the best ways to select an employment attorney is by checking out their marketing. Even if the attorney you have been researching for a while now sounds good on their website, you will need to learn more about their practice. Find out if the attorney walks the talk. Attorneys that focus on a particular area will spend time writing about it. It could be seen through pamphlets, articles, e-books, books or even blog posts.
Look Under the Hood
Learn everything that you can about the lawyer and his or her expertise. Ask about jury instructions. An experienced attorney should have a set of proposed jury instructions if he or she has handled a similar case. Just ask the attorney about all the basic guidelines. It is not necessary to get into all the details. If the attorney you are interested in does not provide a solid answer or stares blankly, then it means that he or she does not have experience in that area.
Moreover, inquire about clerkships. If the attorney has done a clerkship, it would show that he or she has worked with a court after graduating from their respective law school. Such a job provides extensive experience working for the judge. It allows one to learn the procedure and everything about the courtroom. If your attorney has clerked, then it is a bonus. Learning more about the attorney by looking under the hood will pay back in dividends in the long run.