Employees can often be wary at the prospect of bringing a lawyer into the workplace. Naturally, it can be a hard decision to make, especially if you feel your employer or your colleagues will consider it an act of hostility.
However, there are certain circumstances where it is crucial you look after your own interests, even if it can be unpleasant. Discussing a situation with a lawyer also by no means obligates you to file a lawsuit. Here are 4 workplace situations where it’s always worth seeking legal advice.
If you are unexpectedly terminated or have a dispute with your employer, it may be necessary for you to negotiate with your employer over a settlement or severance figure. According to the professionals at tjryanlaw.com, in such a situation, trying to manage the situation yourself can negatively affect the amount of money you are entitled to. It is also likely you will not have as good an idea as an attorney over what kind of figure you deserve. It is therefore critical you contact a lawyer in such a situation, as they can leverage their legal knowledge to get you the best figure possible.
In the United States and most countries, there is a legal exemption that protects you from being terminated for refusing to do something illegal. Similarly, your employer may be liable if they force you or your colleagues to work in illegal conditions. In such instances, consulting a lawyer can be very useful. Not only can they determine whether the situation in your workplace is actually illegal, they can also advise you on the viability of any legal claim you might make.
Discrimination at work based on differences of race, gender, age, religion is a statutory crime in the United States. You are therefore well within your rights to file a legal claim against your employer if you have been a victim of such discrimination. However, workplace discrimination lawsuits are often highly complex, so getting your own lawyer onside as early as possible in the process is a must. In this situation, an experienced employment attorney can give you someone in your corner to fight your case against your employer’s lawyers, while also having the expertise on how to prove a hostile work environment.
An employment lawyer can also be a valuable asset when you think that you have been fired for unlawful reasons. While nearly all states in the U.S. operate an “at-will” presumption, which, in most instances, means that companies can terminate employees at any time without giving a reason, there are several notable exemptions to this that may apply to you. This can be, for example, if your termination breached your employment contract, if it was for discriminatory reasons, or if it was related to your refusal to commit illegal acts on behalf of the company. In the case of wrongful termination, an employment attorney can analyze your employment contract and the evidence surrounding your termination, to determine the lawfulness of your firing.