Heading to the courts after being unfairly dismissed from work is the right thing to do.
But unless you are representing yourself, you will need to instruct the services of a solicitor familiar with cases like yours. So, how do you go about finding a good solicitor that can help you get the justice you deserve?
Searching for unfair dismissal solicitors can be a time-consuming and daunting task that many people simply don’t have the time for. In fact, the process can be so overwhelming that you might even be tempted to forego this option and represent yourself in court, instead.
However, if you know what to look for and the right questions to ask, this process is surprisingly similar to selecting a good mechanic or builder!
In this guide, we are going to show you the uncomplicated way of helping to find the solicitor that’s right for you.
3 Ways To Find The Best Unfair Dismissal Solicitor
Once you have decided to file an unfair dismissal claim, the next thing should be instructing a solicitor that is experienced with such claims, to help you with your case. With this is mind, here are some steps you can take to help you get in touch with an employment law solicitor:
1: Ask Your Network
Your personal network should be the first place to start your search. This network is usually comprised of your family, friends, acquaintances and work colleagues.
Ask them if they know anybody who has used a good unfair dismissal solicitor recently. You may be surprised at just how many people might know of someone else that was once in your shoes and could point you in the right direction.
However, their referrals shouldn’t always be the final word on the matter. If you are not 100% happy with their recommendation you should broaden your search.
2: Ask A Law Firm
You can also ask a law firm for recommendations on approaching an unfair dismissal solicitor, or employment law specialist. Most areas of the UK usually have a large local law firm, call them and ask if they could point you in the right direction. Many businesses are more than happy to do this.
Don’t let the fact that the lawyer you initially call may not practice in the specific area of your case deter you. Lawyers will often keep up-to-date with their colleagues and may easily recommend someone suitable for your case.
3: Online Research
Many of us start with a search online when looking for most things these days. The reason this option is last on our list is because this can sometimes highlight only the biggest UK solicitor firms, and can sometimes miss out smaller but more specialised employment law companies.
You could use sites like Trustpilot or similar to check reviews, but sometimes this can lead to information overload. Your best bet may be to search using local terms, e.g. ‘unfair dismissal solicitors Manchester’ etc.
Once you’ve found a company, take a look at their website. Call them to ask some questions about your case. See what kind of responses you get. This provides a much more accurate ‘feel’ of a company than online reviews ever will.
5 Tips To Consider When Choosing An Unfair Dismissal Solicitor
As with many professions, knowing what differentiates a ‘good’ from a ‘great’ solicitor can mean the difference between a successful or unsuccessful claim.
In addition to the professional aspects that need consideration, you also need to make sure you and your chosen solicitor ‘click’ personally too.
To help guide you through this process, here are the key tips we believe you should consider when choosing an unfair dismissal solicitor:
1: Your Solicitor Must Have Experience
Of course, your lawyer must have the requisite qualifications and technical know-how to deal with your case. But it goes beyond that. A case that looks relatively simple and straightforward can still be lost if your solicitor does not know how to identify and manoeuvre the pitfalls common to such cases.
Subsequently, when you consider expertise, also look at how long your potential solicitor has been handling unfair dismissal cases. It goes without saying that an experienced solicitor would be familiar with the machinations of your opponent. And from that advantageous position, they can develop strategies that could help you win.
2: Closely Evaluate Your Solicitor’s Track Record
In cases like this, experience on its own is not enough. You also want to be sure that your potential solicitor knows what he/she is doing before you hand over your claim to them.
Basically, you don’t want to hire a solicitor with a woeful record of losing in unfair dismissal cases. You should therefore ask for their track record, what percentage of unfair dismissal cases they have won? And don’t just listen to what they say, ask them to show you proof of what they claim.
3: Consider Your Solicitor’s Professionalism
Professionalism is the behaviour, attitude, and conduct of a person in a workplace environment. It is also what distinguishes the best solicitors from simply the competent ones.
Hence, you need your potential solicitor to be professional at all times with you. The indicators of professionalism to look out for include the following:
- Uses appropriate and civil language
- Zealously committed to your best interests
- Economical and efficient
- Respectful and civil to everyone regardless of status
- Well-mannered in all scenarios
- Actively welcomes questions
- Keeps personal and business life separate (unless you are happy for them to discuss both)
4: Consider Your Solicitor’s Personality
Your lawyer may be the most professional in the world, but if you find their personality distracting or off-putting, you may never build the ideal collaborative relationship. With that said, pay attention to your potential solicitor’s personality and take notice of how you feel around them.
Do you feel at ease or tense around them? Do you feel you can open up to them or do you mistrust them for no reason?
If you get uneasy anytime you have to meet with them, don’t feel guilty about aborting the communication. Your claim will require that you spend many hours communicating with this person, either over the phone or in person. So you need a solicitor that you can comfortably converse with.
5: Ensure The Solicitor Is A Good Communicator
Communication is one aspect you should not overlook when selecting a potential solicitor. In the course of your claim, you will be exposed to confusing legal jargon or rules that may need clarification in lay-man terms. This is where a great solicitor comes in. Your solicitor should communicate in a manner that you can readily understand.
Apart from advising you on the options available to you, your potential solicitor should also anticipate any questions you might have about the case. They should also keep you regularly up-to-date with the case, without you needing to call first.
Questions You Should Ask Before You Hire A Solicitor
By this time, you may have found some options that you are interested in pursuing further. To help you make the right choice, here are some questions to ask your potential solicitors:
- Do you offer a free initial consultation to clients? If not, how much will the first interview between us cost?
- How much are your fees? How do you prefer to receive payment (instalments, lump sum, etc.)? Are there any extra services included in the fee? Can I negotiate the fees or mode of payment?
- How long have you been practising as an unfair dismissal solicitor?
- How experienced are you with unfair dismissal cases? What has been the outcome of such cases? Have you handled a similar case recently?
- Have you ever been subjected to disciplinary action?
- What is your current caseload like? Are you available to accept my case at this time?
In addition to the questions above, know that you have the right to ask your potential solicitor for references from current or past clients. A solicitor that is eager to work with you will readily hand over their references or point you in the right direction. If the solicitor declines your request, terminate the appointment and continue with your search.
Summary: Unfair Dismissal Solicitors – And Where To Get Free Advice
A great solicitor will deploy their knowledge and technical skills to navigate and overcome the numerous legal obstacles that will certainly arise during your unfair dismissal case. You will also have to depend on them for strategic counsel that could help you win in court.
From this, you can see that your choice of solicitor can either make or break your case. It is important, therefore, that you apply due diligence during your search.
If you would like some free informative advice from a legal claims advisor use the form below, to arrange a free, no-obligation call to discuss your case and get your claim moving.