As an employer, it's important to be aware of the potential legal ramifications and liabilities which can arise from operating a business. One way to minimize legal risk is to hire an employer defense attorney who will understand the nuances of employment law, and provide expert advice on how best to handle labor disputes or other issues that could potentially put your business in jeopardy. This article will discuss five instances when a company may need to hire an employer defense attorney.
1. Drafting Employment Policies and Procedures
Properly drafted employment policies and procedures are essential for any successful business operation. An experienced employer defense attorney can help you craft documents such as employee handbooks, job descriptions, non-compete agreements, and more that comply with applicable employment laws, while also reducing the potential for legal disputes down the line.
2. Negotiating Employment Contracts
When hiring a new employee, a well-written contract can be beneficial to both parties. An employer defense attorney can help you create an ironclad agreement that protects your interests and ensures all duties, obligations, and expectations are clearly outlined in writing. This is especially important when it comes to independent contractors or other atypical arrangements which may not fit neatly into the traditional employment framework.
3. Responding to EEOC Complaints
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) investigates claims of discrimination or harassment filed against employers by current or former employees. If you're faced with an EEOC complaint, you'll need to respond quickly, accurately, and professionally. An employer defense attorney can help guide your response and provide advice on how best to minimize potential exposure or risk.
4. Representing Your Business in Court
If a labor dispute or other legal issue escalates to the point that it involves litigation, you'll want a competent employer defense attorney representing your company in court. This is especially important for employers who are being sued by current or former employees for alleged violations of state and federal employment laws. Having experienced legal counsel present during trial can make all the difference when it comes to achieving a favorable outcome.
5. Negotiating Severance Agreements
Sometimes, it's best to reach an agreement with a departing employee or former employee in order to settle a legal dispute. An employer defense attorney can help negotiate a severance package that is both fair and legally sound while also protecting your interests as an employer.
Navigating the complexities of employment law can be a daunting task for employers, especially when faced with serious legal issues such as discrimination and harassment claims. Hiring an experienced employer defense attorney can provide invaluable peace of mind and ensure that any labor disputes are handled professionally and efficiently. Knowing when it's appropriate to hire such counsel is key to managing legal risks within your business operation. By being aware of these five instances where you may need the services of an employer defense attorney, you'll be better prepared to protect your company against potential liability.