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What You Need Before Your Free Consultation

Posted on December 20, 2018 | Firm News

Wrongful termination, discrimination, and other work-related injustices can have long-ranging financial and emotional consequences. If you are seeking legal action against an employer, it is helpful to know how an initial consultation works and how to prepare.

How to Find an Employment Attorney

One of the best ways to find an attorney is through word of mouth. Referrals and positive experiences are essential when researching employment lawyers in the Los Angeles area. Along with a record of success, there are many indications of a quality law firm and lawyer.

  • How do they respond to your telephone calls and communications? Are they prompt?
  • Do they take time to listen to your situation and events fully? Do they seem interested?
  • Will a lawyer personally handle your case, or will they hand it off to an associate?

Meeting With an Employment Attorney

Once you narrow down a list of candidates, it’s time to meet with the attorney of your choice. Some lawyers will attempt to screen your case over the phone by asking questions about the basics of your case. If they feel you meet the basic criteria, it will be time to schedule a free initial consultation.

The purpose of these case evaluations is to hear your side of the story. An attorney will likely ask you to explain your work situation, take notes, and ask questions. The more prepared you are to answer these questions, the more smoothly this meeting will go – and the better an attorney will be able to tell if you have a case.

Questions to Ask an Employment Attorney

An in-person meeting at an attorney’s office is usually brief. Come prepared with any questions you want to ask your prospective attorney.

  • Do you think I have legal grounds for a case?
  • What kind of compensation should I expect to receive?
  • Who will be working on my case?
  • Whom can I call with questions regarding my case?
  • How often will I receive updates regarding the status of my case?
  • What is your fee structure like? How will I be charged?
  • Do I need to pay for any legal fees up front?
  • Have you handled cases like mine before?
  • How long will it take to resolve my case?

What to Bring to a Consultation

One of the best ways you can prepare for an initial consultation is to bring documentation that supports your claims.

  • A chronology of events that illustrates the facts of the case. A written account of events can help your attorney better understand your situation.
  • A list of any witnesses to employer misconduct and their contact information
  • A copy of your resume
  • Any documents exchanged between you and your employer. Request a copy of your work record if possible.
  • An employee handbook issued by your employer at your hiring
  • Documents relating to your job description. These can be particularly helpful for disability discrimination cases.
  • Paystubs or other documentation showing that you received payment from your employer
  • Any documents relating to your job performance
  • Any documents you have that might be pertinent to your case or legal claims

A free initial consultation works both ways: it allows you to see if an attorney will be a good fit for your situation, but it also gives the lawyer an idea if a case exists. The more prepared you are for the meeting, the more productive it will be. By bringing a list of questions and documentation with you, you will leave the meeting with a better idea of whether legal action against your employer is necessary. If you believe you have been a victim of workplace discrimination or wrongful employment, contact us to arrange your free case evaluation today.