Employment Law -- Employee

Must I Hire An Attorney To Represent Me At The Hearing?

You have the right to be represented by an attorney, but you do not have to hire one as long as you are diligent in gathering the necessary evidence. The Claimant’s Guide to the Appeals Process will provide assistance in preparing you for the hearing.

If you plan to get representation, do so as soon as possible, so that your representative will have time to prepare. Notify the Appeals Division of the name and address of your representative so that he or she will be informed of hearings or proceedings. You must decide before the hearing whether you need representation. Start immediately to gather any papers that relate to the issue such as correspondence from your employer, union contracts, warning notices or medical statements. Also, be certain that any witnesses who have direct knowledge of the events in question are available to attend the hearing.

The hearing before the Referee is the only chance you will have to tell your story. Be prepared to tell the Referee everything you think is important and to present all witnesses and evidence at the hearing. You will not be allowed another hearing to present evidence that you failed to offer the first time unless you had good cause for your failure.