Finding the right professional for any job is challenge. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, employment disputes have become more common. The labour situation has grown unstable and executives and managers are often wondering: am I protected? What do I do if I have a problem at work? When your career is at stake, it’s important to find the best person for the job. How do you do that? What are the right things to look for? To get some more perspective, we spoke to Jérémy H. Little, an Executive Employment Lawyer in Montréal at OLS Québec-Labour and Employment Lawyers. Here were a few suggestions.
- Find a Lawyer with Expertise in Employment Law
It might seem obvious, but it’s very important. Some lawyers are generalists who do many different areas of law. While not wanting to downplay their qualifications, there are significant advantages to dealing with a labour law expert. An expert whose practice is devoted specially to the area you need will generally be able to answer your questions faster. This is because they’ll have significant experience in the area, will immediately know the right questions to ask, and will often have answers at their fingertips, without having to spend time or money to research things. They’ll also have an advantage when it comes to the fine details and the little things that might seem insignificant but can change the whole outcome of the case.
2. Find an Employment Lawyer with Expertise regarding Your Specific Area
Are all labour lawyers the same? No. Are all employment lawyers the same? No. So, what’s the difference? Leaving aside that different lawyers may have different skills or different experience, there are also a lot of different areas in employment law. For example, some lawyers are specialized in collective labour relations and have spent their careers negotiating collective agreements between unions and employers. Others have spent their whole careers dealing with workplace accidents and the complex administrative system which regulates them. Certain lawyers have spent their entire career dealing with executives and managers who have employment concerns with their employers. To be clear, employment lawyers can be experts in more than one area and you don’t have to be an expert to be capable. That said, having professional expertise in the specific area you need is a tremendous advantage.
3. Find a Lawyer with Expertise Regarding Your Specific Type of File
All files are not the same. Even within the same area, file types can be extremely different. For example, within collective labour relations, union grievances are a very different area from collective agreements. They have different dynamics and require very different skillsets and experience. Similarly, within workplace accidents, dealing with managing an accident claim is a very different specialization from dealing with a penal prosecution for creating an unsafe workplace. Within Executive Employment, file types can also be very different. A constructive dismissal claim is a different dynamic from a harassment claim. While direct experience with your specific type of file is not a must, it will generally prove extremely helpful in giving you an edge to ensure that you have the best chance at getting an optimal result in your file.
4. Find a Lawyer Who is Honest
Part of providing excellent professional services is being deeply honest with clients. Even if a lawyer is very talented, those talents are wasted if they are not honest with their clients. Some cases do not have any reasonable chance at success. Others are not worth pursuing because the cost of pursuing the case would exceed the value that can be gained. One of the best ways to give yourself the best chance of success it to know when your case is not worth pursuing. This will help you to avoid wasting your time and your money in a way that is unproductive. An honest and devoted professional will not mind telling you when you should not hire them, even if they cost themselves money in the process. A great lawyer should want your investment in their services to be profitable and helpful for you.
5. Find a Lawyer Who is Practical
For solutions to be successful for clients, they have to be practical. Being knowledgeable about the law is important. Having experience is important. However, it is most important for a lawyer to combine their significant knowledge and experience in order to get a decent result for their clients. The best way to achieve this is for the lawyer to be pragmatic and focused. A lawyer’s primary objective should be to figure out how they can get the best possible result for the client, as efficiently and painlessly as possible. The best lawyers develop a strategy to achieve results from the start of the file and then stay focused on achieving practical solutions. It is ideal to find a lawyer who will consider what is the optimal solution to your problem and then do their best to help you achieve it.
Photo by Pavel Danilyuk