How do I find a lawyer for a discrimination lawsuit?

If the EEOC deems that your complaint can be subject for a lawsuit, then you may want to file a private or class-action lawsuit.  In that case, you will want to find an attorney who can assist you on a contingency basis, which means he will only collect a fee if he wins a settlement or a case in court. When you win the case, you may be awarded both compensatory damage and punitive damage.  The amount of compensatory damage is normally not large.  It may include the salaries you’ve lost and the lawyer’s fees.  The amount of the punitive damage could be very large, if the discrimination is blatant and malicious.  A lawyer working on a contingency basis, normally takes one third of the award.

A list of Asian American lawyers can be found at the NAPABA (National Asian Pacific American Bar Association) website, www.napaba.org if you join as a member.  Or you can use the law directory on http://directory.findlaw.com/ for free.  Pro Bono services can be found at: http://www.abanet.org/legalservices/probono/home.html

Often you may need a lawyer who is familiar with the laws of your state or locality.  You can look up the yellow pages in your telephone book, under “lawyer.”  There will be hundreds of names there.  Don’t be fazed by that.  Look for those lawyers who have ads in the yellow page that specifically list discrimination as one of their preferred areas of practice.  You’ll find out that the number of such lawyers is quite small.  Call some of them to find out if they’ll handle your case on a contingency basis.  Tell them that you’ve already contacted EEOC, and that it deems that you may have a valid case.  Most lawyers do not take a case on contingency basis unless EEOC has already done the first layer of screening.

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