Most employment law cases rely on employment documents and records as evidence to support your claim. Common documents that are used in employment law cases include: employee handbooks, paystubs, schedules, job descriptions, emails, texts, discipline records, performance reviews, employer policies and procedures, medical records, and leave of absence documentation. Without fail, my clients regularly tell me that they did not keep copies of these documents. Many times, we can obtain these documents from your employer. But, some documents, especially emails and texts, may be lost forever if you did not keep your personal copy.
Similarly, most employment lawsuits do not result from a single incident that happens without warning. Most cases involve a series of events, write-ups, meetings, etc. that culminate in a termination, suspension, or demotion. But, without fail, most employees do not take the time to document details about the occurrence.
Let’s face it, your best recollection of an event will be immediately after it occurs, not weeks, months or years later. My golden rule is to document “who, what, when and where” for every incident that occurs in the workplace. First, write down “who” was present when the incident occurred—include the names of coworkers, supervisors and management. Second, write down “what” occurred—describe the incident and everything you can recall that was said. Third, write down “when” the incident occurred, including the date and time. Finally, write down “where” the incident occurred. Keep all of this information at home in a safe place. I suggest you purchase a composition notebook because the pages do not fall out.