My Company Is Being Sued By An Employee: What Should I Do?

Being sued by an employee can be a difficult situation to navigate, especially if it is the first time. If you are being sued by an employee, remain calm. Legal counsel can assist to mitigate and resolve the situation. If you receive notice of a lawsuit from a prior employee, here is how you should proceed.

1. Do not panic, a lawsuit does not necessarily mean a loss. Seek legal counsel to evaluate the merits of the employee’s claim and to evaluate if you have potential claims against the employee. It is best to have counsel experienced in these types of situations as opposed to evaluating things on your own. Often employers who attempt to represent themselves will create issues in litigation and then seek an attorney later to fix the hurdles. Always resort to seeking someone who specializes in employment litigation sooner rather than later.

2. Gather all employee information, and most importantly do not discard any information relating to the employee. You should instead gather all information, emails, and communications with the employee to present to your counsel for inspection. 

3. Do NOT fire the employee. If the employee is still working for you when you receive notice that they are suing you, do not fire them as a result of the lawsuit. This will create an additional claim against you for retaliation.  The employee can not be fired simply because they are suing you, rather they may only be fired for proper reasons.

4. File a claim with your insurance. The claim may be covered by your insurance. Make sure that you file a timely claim. Employment counsel may be able to assist you with navigating these details.

5. Do not reach out to the employee directly and avoid contact where possible. Allow your counsel to communicate directly with the employees counsel to avoid any complications to the litigation.

6. Prevent future lawsuits from occurring by having counsel review employment contracts, policies and handbooks. Preventative legal work is often more time efficient and cost effective than litigation.

If you are facing a lawsuit from an employee, contact us to schedule a free consultation, and allow our firm to assist you with navigating this difficult situation and finding a resolution.