Discover Career Opportunities

Workplace Woes? Know When to Seek Legal Counsel as an Employee

We may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

Numerous jobs inherently pose risks, with some more susceptible to injury than others. Yet, potential hazards can arise in any work environment, leading to injury, job loss, or scenarios that necessitate legal assistance. With over a million practicing lawyers in the US—averaging one lawyer for every 300 individuals—the availability of legal help is extensive. While some may consider this excessive, the abundance ensures prompt access to legal support when required.

Stuck in a work dilemma? Understanding when to seek legal help can empower you. Dive into our guide and protect your rights as an employee today! #KnowYourRights #EmployeeEmpowermentClick To Tweet

A variety of situations may arise at work where legal assistance becomes necessary. While instances of unlawful activities typically warrant reporting to the police, situations that directly impact you may require personalized legal representation.

Scenario Description
Workplace Discrimination If you feel that you’re being unfairly treated due to your race, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, or disability status.
Harassment When you are subject to persistent or severe unwelcome comments, behaviors, or actions that create a hostile work environment.
Wrongful Termination If you believe you were dismissed from your job for illegal reasons or in violation of employment agreements.
Retaliation If you faced adverse actions after reporting misconduct, filing a complaint, or participating in workplace investigations.
Wage Disputes When your employer fails to pay you correctly for your regular and overtime hours worked.
Contract Violations If your employer breaks the terms stated in your employment contract.


Workplace injuries can result from myriad factors, ranging from a slippery floor to malfunctioning machinery. Should your injury require medical attention or time off work, you may be eligible for compensation. Companies like Fall ProtectionPlus offer equipment designed to prevent such incidents. If you identify a need for additional safety gear in your role, address this with your manager. Should they refuse your request, you might consider whether purchasing personal equipment is an option.


Various issues related to paychecks can arise, including insufficient payment, overpayment, excessive taxation, or complete non-payment. Although most payroll issues are promptly resolved within your company, should a problem persist, you might require the assistance of a financial attorney. To stay vigilant about potential payroll discrepancies, familiarize yourself with your paycheck structure and meticulously record your worked hours and corresponding pay.

Top 10 Highest-Paying Jobs in the U.S.

Rank Occupation Median Annual Salary
1 Anesthesiologist $331,190
2 Surgeon $323,750
3 Orthodontist $319,820
4 Prosthodontist $316,890
5 Psychiatrist $313,960
6 Ophthalmologist, Except Pediatric $311,030
7 Dermatologist $308,090
8 Cardiologist $305,160
9 Neurologist $302,220
10 Emergency Medicine Physician $300,300

Breach of contract

Contracts vary greatly, tailored to individual circumstances, yet some elements remain consistent. Employers often breach terms related to legal break requirements, appropriate notice and justification for dismissal, permissible continuous working hours, and termination due to undisclosed medical conditions.

Many employees have been compelled to forego breaks or work excessively long shifts, both of which are illegal. Dismissals due to an employee’s medical condition are unacceptable unless it poses a risk to the individual or others, and in such cases, it’s typically considered a redundancy rather than a termination. Consulting with a specialist employment lawyer can provide clarity on whether you have a case in these matters and the best representative for your situation.

Sexual harassment

This point is clear-cut: it’s unacceptable for anyone to touch you inappropriately or direct improper comments your way. Should you experience harassment or feel victimized at work, immediately report it to your supervisor or escalate it to Human Resources. If your concerns go unaddressed, legal recourse may be your next step.

Job Elimination

Understanding the legal parameters of job elimination and your corresponding rights is crucial, particularly if you’re confronting job loss due to downsizing. Experiencing such a transition can provoke a whirlwind of emotions, including fear, anger, and anxiety. Regardless of your job loss circumstances, consulting an employment lawyer can help safeguard your legal rights and ensure you receive the compensation you’re entitled to (see How to Emerge from a Job Loss in Great Mental Shape). Knowledge of your rights is paramount in this process.

In certain situations, if you can substantiate that the termination process was unjust or deviated from the company’s guidelines, you might be eligible for an enhanced severance package. However, this route often involves navigating intricate legal procedures, making it prudent to seek advice from an employment law specialist.

Moving On: New Life After Job Loss

This book is about getting one's life in order and moving on after career setbacks. The book shares a number of anecdotes from personal experiences, intending that the book be both instructional and motivational in its tone.

Buy on Amazon
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/26/2023 03:46 am GMT

What's next?

home popular resources subscribe search