If you’ve been wronged as an employee you might be able to pursue an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) complaint that leads to a lawsuit. If successfully navigated, the suit could bring you just compensation and other remedies relating to the financial, career and emotional damages that you suffered as a result of the wrongdoing.
Since wronged employees can pursue such claims without contracting a professional attorney to represent them, many ask the logical questions: Will I be better off if I hire a lawyer, and how exactly will a lawyer help?
What an employment law attorney can do for your EEOC case
The vast majority of employees have never tried to pursue an EEOC case before. As such, when individuals represent themselves in an EEOC complaint, they will not know what to expect, they won’t know what’s “normal” procedure, and they won’t be able to recognize when the opposing counsel is trying to pull the wool over their eyes. In this respect, having a lawyer on your side can be enormously beneficial to ensure that your protect your legal rights.
Here are few specific things that your attorney can do for you:
- Achieve a higher settlement: Employment law attorneys are skilled negotiators, who have negotiated hundreds of settlements in the past. Extensive experience in the negotiation of legal settlements like this can go a long way to ensuring you get the most for your case.
- Knowing what your case is worth: Your lawyer will have an in-depth understanding of what your case should be worth. This will go a long way toward ensuring you don’t accept a deal for less than your case is worth.
- Keeping things objective: Your lawyer will stay objective and business-minded about your settlement, preventing the interference of hurtful feelings and emotional reactions. In this respect, your lawyer will help you stay calm, cool and collected while keeping your fearful reactions at bay. He or she will also have the ability to communicate the value of your case to the opposing counsel in a diplomatic fashion that facilitates negotiations.
- Benefit from your lawyer’s reputation: A well-respected employment law attorney will allow you to benefit from his or her reputation. Perhaps your lawyer has negotiated favorable settlements with defense lawyers in the past and has a reputation for going to court when things get tough. This will certainly help during settlement negotiations.
To hire or not to hire an attorney in your case
The decision to seek representation from a professional attorney is ultimately a personal one. Some employees will feel more comfortable going it on their own, while others will want to receive the above benefits and more. As such, Phoenix-area employees are encouraged to investigate all of the options available to them — in terms of representing themselves, contracting an attorney and even considering legal representation for just one aspect of their employment law cases.