Nobody wants to be in a position where they have to sue their employer. But sometimes, it’s the only way to get what you’re rightfully owed. So if you find yourself in this situation, here are seven tips to help you win your lawsuit against your employer.
The first and most important thing you can do to win a legal case against your employer is gathered evidence. This may include performance reviews, emails, text messages, and witness statements. By assembling a robust body of evidence, you can increase your chances of prevailing in court.
While it may be tempting to rely solely on digital evidence, such as emails and text messages, don’t forget the value of physical evidence. For example, if your employer has a policy of shredding performance reviews after a certain period, retrieving an old review from the trash can help prove your case.
Similarly, if you have witnesses who can attest to the events in question, their testimony can be invaluable.
Choose the Right Court
If you’re suing your employer, you’ll need to choose the right court. Generally speaking, two types of courts may have jurisdiction over your case: federal and state.
Federal courts typically hear cases involving issues of federal law, such as discrimination or harassment based on a protected characteristic like race or gender. On the other hand, state courts typically hear cases involving state law, such as wrongful termination or breach of contract.
To determine which type of court is right for your case, you’ll need to consult an attorney. They can help you understand the jurisdictional requirements and ensure that you file your lawsuit in the correct court.
Seek Counsel from an Experienced Employment Attorney
This is the most important tip of all. Without experienced legal counsel, navigating the complexities of the employment relationship, state and federal employment laws, and the court system is daunting, if not impossible.
An attorney will be able to help you determine whether you have a valid claim, what type of damages you may be entitled to, and how best to present your case to maximize your chances of success. They will also be able to handle all the paperwork and filings required by the court, which can be complex and time-consuming.
Understand the Statute of Limitations
Every state has laws that dictate how long you have to file a lawsuit. This is known as the statute of limitations. If you don’t file your lawsuit within the specified time frame, you will likely be barred from doing so.
The statute of limitations for employment-related lawsuits varies by state. For example, in California, the statute of limitations for wrongful termination is one year. If you were wrongfully terminated more than one year ago, you would likely be unable to sue your employer.
Know Your Burden of Proof
You must prove that your employer is at fault to win a lawsuit. This is known as your burden of proof. The type of evidence you’ll need to prove your case will depend on the legal claim you’re making.
For example, if you allege that you were wrongfully terminated, you’ll need to prove that your employer had no justifiable reason to fire you. If you’re alleging that you were discriminated against, you’ll need to prove that your employer treated you differently than other employees who are not in your protected class.
Be Prepared to Go to Trial
Many employment-related lawsuits are settled before they go to trial. However, you should be prepared to take your case to court. This means being prepared to testify about the events in question and facing cross-examination from your employer’s attorney.
Suppose you’re not comfortable with going to trial. In that case, you may want to consider hiring an experienced trial attorney well-versed in compensation pleas, such as in the Garlock Palmyra case. They can help you prepare for what to expect and increase your chances of success.
Suing your employer can be a long and frustrating process. It’s essential to be patient and understand that these things take time. The best thing you can do is stay focused on your goal and remain confident in your case.
Suing your employer is a serious matter. If you’re considering taking this step, it’s important to understand the process and what you need to do to increase your chances of success. Keep these tips in mind, and be sure to consult with an experienced employment attorney before moving forward.