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7 Things to Avoid Saying to an Employment Lawyer

— June 22, 2023

If you say the wrong things, they will see you as a red flag and simply pass over your case.  

Let’s say that you have been terminated from your job and are not happy with the way. You would not be the only one; around 150,000 people are wrongfully terminated from their job every year. When that happens, the best thing for you to do is to get an attorney and make sure you obtain justice.

That said, when that happens, there are certain things that you should and should not tell your attorney. You may think that you can say anything you want to your attorney, but the wrong thing can get your case rejected. For things to go smoothly and not raise any red flags, here are some things you should avoid saying to your employment attorney. 

  1. “You Will Only Settle for At Least 7 Figures”

Indeed, someone going through a lawsuit will want to get their worth may cause you to push for a higher amount. However, unless the circumstances are rare and very special, you will never get a seven-figure settlement. Telling this to your attorney will make you look like a walking red flag. 

When you say this to your attorney, you are all but telling them that you are going to be a difficult client. Most claims in San Mateo, California have a cap. Even if they don’t, 7 figures are very rare. When you tell this to a San Mateo employment lawyer, you will suggest that you have unrealistic views, as they will be able to see the dollar sign flashing through your eyes.

  1. “You’re the Sixth Lawyer I’ve Interviewed” 

There is nothing wrong with shopping around when looking for a good employment lawyer. However, this mainly applies to the research. As an employer, you will likely look through profiles, after which you will call your best matches in the office. Most of us call 1-3 attorneys before we settle on someone and start working. 

If one person passes on your case, you may take it as a simple lack of experience from the attorney. However, if five other people turned you down, it might suggest that there is something wrong with your case. They may wonder why they did not take you on, and while you may think they’ll love the “challenge,” most are put off by this. 

  1. “This Will Be an East Win for You”

In the world of lawsuits, there’s no such thing as an easy win. If it were that easy, you would not need an attorney in the first place. There’s no saying when something may go wrong with a case, causing it to go sideways in favor of the other person. So when you say that something is an easy win, it may raise a couple of red flags. 

When you downplay a case and try to make it look easy, it may also make it seem like you are hiding something from them. To protect their reputation, many people will resort to lying, even if it means lying to their own attorney. A case is never easy – and if it is, then it means you are hiding something. 

  1. “Others Said They’d Charge Me Less”

There is nothing wrong with shopping for the best rate, but arguing theirs will get you nowhere. You can either accept their rate or you can leave it and move on. No author will lower their fees just to get your case; not a good one, anyway. You pay for quality, so if you want a job well done, it is to be expected that you’ll be charged more. 

With that in mind, you may not want to bring the finances talk up right off the bat. Think of this meeting with your attorney as a first date; you don’t want to bring finances up from the very beginning. You can ask this from the phone, and if you can’t afford it, you can move on. Otherwise, it may suggest that payment can be a problem, which may cause them to be reluctant in taking your case.

  1. “I Wish to Speak to the Attorney, Not the Clerk” 

Many attorneys, especially the good ones, will likely have assistants to take over their calls while they are busy with their cases. If they have the time to take your initial call, they will. If they don’t, they will delegate the job to their assistant, which is trained enough to determine a good case from a bag case.

Man screaming into telephone; image by Icons8 Team, via
Image by Icons8 Team, via

If you demand right away to speak to the attorney, completely dismissing the intake clerk, the attorney may see this as a red flag. You will appear demanding, condescending, and even rude, which can be a turn-off. Plus, if you are dubbed as a client who thinks the world should stop spinning to cater to your needs, even a good jury may find you off-putting. A good lawyer will know this and will likely not want to take your case.

  1. “I’ve Done My Own Research”

While there is nothing wrong with being informed, you should not try to boast it to your attorney. It’s good to have enough knowledge to help a case, but when you start quoting articles and references, it may be a problem. 

Doing so will suggest that you have high expectations (real or not) and that you are willing to go over their head and fight their methods. Lawyers go through long years of law school, so obviously, they won’t like it when you start quoting them on how they should do their job. 

  1. “It’s Not About the Money”

Perhaps someone wronged you and you want to make them pay for it. In that case, you should not tell this to your lawyer. This is because, in the end, it is always about the money. Revenge has no place in lawsuits, where lawyers are concerned. 

A lawyer can only help you with one thing: recover the money that you are entitled to. They are investing in your case, so when you tell them you don’t care about the money, it’s a major red flag.

The Bottom Line

An employment attorney can help you efficiently win a case, but you need to tread carefully. After all, their reputation and payment are at risk here. If you say the wrong things, they will see you as a red flag and simply pass over your case.  

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