Every HR professional must understand employment law in order to perform and lead successfully in an organisation. The knowledge of the law will help them whenever problems arise such as employee discrimination, harassment, complaint, etc. within the company. However, there remain some tricky issues regarding employment that HR department alone cannot elucidate. When this happens, it might need help from some legal experts such as employment lawyer.
Employment lawyer, also known as labour lawyer or an attorney, is an individual who works as an in-house counsel, in private law firms, and for the government. Employers rely on employment attorney to help them comply with laws that they must follow in order to lawfully form and terminate employment relationships.
See also: Guide to Construct Better Employment Contract
A labour lawyer can help an employer save time and money as well as make sure that there is no harmful action that might disrupt the company’s stability. In-house attorney, for example, could practice employment law as part of a wider practice that meets a company’s range of legal needs.
To understand what you can discuss with your labour attorney, here are a few tasks and issues they are expert in, according to Lisa Guerin.
An employer can discuss and ask a lawyer to review any employment decision that will affect a large number of employees. You might also want to discuss certain sensitive employment law such as termination, classification issues, grievances, discipline measures, employment tribunal or other potential labour changes.
Many organisations offer flexible working hours and constantly listen to employee request to make sure they are loyal and engaged in the workplace. However, some employees might submit a request that will change the terms of a contract in which an employer can approve or reject. When doing so, there will likely be an internal conflict between employer and employees, thus, asking legal advice from a lawyer is advisable.
An employment attorney is an expert in employment law so if there is changing policy, contacts or agreement that directly or indirectly involve the whole organisation staff, HRD should seek advice from a lawyer to make sure that they contain all the necessary legal terms and will be enforced by a court. Labour lawyer will also check whether your new policy has any language that might cause problems later or if you have gone beyond what the law requires of you.
Under certain circumstances, an employer is advised to contact an attorney in order to make sure that everything is in the right place and that no wrong decision/move is taken. The circumstances include the following points.
When hiring a labour lawyer, there is considerable cost you should pay. The cost will depend on the details of employment case, lawyer’s skills, the union you belong to, and your company region. Based on LegalMatch, there are five types of fee schedules in which an attorney you hire will charge you.
Read also: What TO DO When Ministry of Labour Visit Your Company?