Where to get free employment law advice and getting the most from it
Published 05 September 2022
If you find yourself in a position where you desperately need employment law advice knowing what you can get for free is going to be extremely helpful.
If you are facing disciplinary action, redundancy, worrying questions from your employer about your capability or need help to raise a grievance, expert legal advice can be invaluable.
The same also applies if you are concerned about your health and safety at work, suffering work-related stress or if you have had an accident that is not your fault.
At work you should always be prepared to expect the unexpected, and when things go wrong knowing where to turn for the right help is vital.
You can of course pay for legal advice, which can be costly. The most recent government guidance (Oct 2021) for solicitors’ guideline hourly rates shows prices for the most experienced solicitor can range from £255 per hour nationally to £512 per hour in some parts of London [1 cited 5.9.22]
So at a time when we are all looking to cut costs and save money, being aware of what exactly you can get for free is going to be priceless.
There are different options available, and here we take a look at a few that are available to you.
Problems with your employer can be confusing, upsetting, unsettling, incredibly stressful and confusing.
You may fear you are going to lose your job after being suspended from work, or be dealing with a situation that is making your working life extremely difficult
We can help and advise you on any work-related issue, which is giving you cause for concern.
Our specialist advisors will give you free advice during your initial consultation, advise you about your legal rights, what you can do for the best in the situation you find yourself in and take you through your options moving forward.
Many employment solicitors will offer you a free first consultation and some will provide advice for a fixed fee. If you contact a solicitor you should check if they offer a first consultation for free or do so for a fixed fee.
Such appointments can help you find out your rights and legal position and to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your case.
You can also get free employment advice from ACAS, which is an independent public body that receives funding from the government [3 cited 5.9.22]
It provides free and impartial advice to employers, employees and their representatives on employment rights, best practice and policies and resolving workplace conflict.
Telephone advisors talk you through any work-related problem or question you have, what the law says and how it relates to you, good practice at work and your options, including any risks and benefits.
A trade union is a group of employees who join together to maintain and improve their conditions of employment [4 cited 5.9.22] Any worker can join a trade union.
A union will fight hard for its members, who are normally entitled to free advice on employment matters and legal assistance once you are an established member.
To make the most out of any appointment that provides free employment law advice, you should make a note beforehand of the key points you wish to discuss.
Most initial consultations are likely to be time restricted, so bear this in mind because time is valuable.
You do not have to explain all aspects of your case in full detail, as an advisor will ask you for any information they need or that is important.
Be clear and concise in explaining the main issues and the help you need. Listen carefully and if you can take notes of the advice provided.