Workers’ Compensation

Ca. Workers' Comp. Quarterly 2014, Vol. 27, No. 4

Undocumented Injured Workers: A Perspective

MARIA A. SAGER, ESQ.

Oakland, California

An alien is generally considered to be either a legal permanent resident, allowed to work in the United States, or undocumented and not allowed to work in the United States. However, pursuant to Labor Code section 3351(a), the workers’ compensation system considers both documented and undocumented aliens to be employees. This article focuses on undocumented injured workers.

Why should we care about these injured workers, aside from its being the right thing to do? For starters, according to the Public Policy Institute of California, it is estimated that in 2010 California was home to 2.6 million undocumented immigrants, 1.8 million of whom were employed. As a result, chances are you will eventually handle claims undocumented injured workers have filed.

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