Indian Wells Undocumented Worker Injury Attorney

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Indian Wells Undocumented Worker Injury Lawyer

Indian Wells Undocumented Worker Injury Attorney

Indian Wells is a small town situated in Coachella Valley. Its economy depends on the agriculture and tourism industries, which are largely made up of undocumented workers. If you are working without papers in Indian Wells and have been injured on the job, then an Indian Wells undocumented worker injury attorney from English Lloyd & Armenta can help you understand your rights and get you the proper compensation to recover from your injuries.

English Lloyd & Armenta: Your Indian Wells Undocumented Worker Injury Attorneys

The labor rights legal team at English Lloyd & Armenta has been working for workers of all backgrounds and immigration statuses for over 30 years. We are fueled by the belief that no worker should face discrimination or be deprived of their rights or benefits. 

An Indian Wells undocumented worker injury attorney can lend an empathetic ear to your situation as we work to understand the details of your case. We can then help you understand your rights and pursue all possible avenues to restore justice to a workplace accident situation. 

Occupational Risks for Undocumented Workers in Indian Wells & Coachella Valley

The agriculture industry in Coachella Valley is worth an estimated $600 million, and a large proportion of the workers that make up the industry are undocumented. Working for long hours in the hot sun of the region can lead to a larger risk of heat-related illnesses, along with other dangers related to the machinery and chemicals used in farm work.

Undocumented workers in Indian Wells also make up a large part of the tourism industry workforce. These workers often make minimum wage and carry out difficult manual labor, such as cleaning rooms, mowing lawns, preparing food, and making repairs. All of these occupations carry their own risks of injury due to the chemicals and environmental factors present in their workplaces.

For this reason, the government of California has established protections for undocumented workers, helping secure their human and labor rights under California and federal state law. The legal team at English Lloyd & Armenta fights hard for undocumented workers who serve our communities by providing quality, personalized representation and protection for those who have been injured on the job.

Common Injuries That Undocumented Workers Face in Indian Wells

All workers are subject to the risk of sustaining workplace injuries, no matter their immigration status. However, undocumented workers must deal with unique challenges. These can both increase their risk of getting hurt at work and limit their access to medical treatment and benefits, such as workers’ compensation, to cover the cost. Some common injuries that undocumented workers can suffer include:

  • Fall Injuries: Undocumented workers in Indian Wells may be subject to injuries that result from slip and fall accidents or falling from heights, which commonly occur in the agricultural, construction, and restaurant industries. Fall injuries can range from minor injuries, such as wrist sprains, to more serious spinal cord injuries.
  • Musculoskeletal Conditions: Carrying out repetitive motion that puts strain on the body over a long period of time can lead to painful musculoskeletal conditions, such as osteoarthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and tennis elbow.
  • Heat Stroke: As undocumented workers are commonly in jobs that require working outside under the hot Indian Wells sun, this can leave them at risk for heat-related illnesses, such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Such illnesses can be mitigated by allowing for adequate breaks and ensuring that employees have adequate water and nutrition intake.
  • Heavy Machinery-Related Injuries: Undocumented workers who are operating large and complex equipment, as well as heavy machinery, can be at risk of severe accidents that cause injuries, especially if they are not adequately trained and the proper safety protocols are not being implemented.
  • Toxic Exposure Conditions: Workers who commonly handle harmful substances or are exposed to toxic chemicals over time can develop serious, life-threatening conditions, such as lung cancer and asbestosis. While some toxic chemicals, such as asbestos, are illegal to use in products, workers in industries, such as construction and shipbuilding, are still at risk for such exposure if they work on older buildings or ships.
  • Motor Vehicle Crashes: Undocumented laborers who are required to operate vehicles as part of their jobs have an increased risk of being in vehicle accidents. Such crashes can involve trucks, cranes, tractors, and other motor vehicles. These may result in minor injuries, such as concussions, or more serious injuries, such as skull fractures or severe brain injuries.

While this list includes common injuries that undocumented workers face in Indian Wells, it is not an exhaustive list of all the conditions and illnesses that can result from a workplace accident or workplace conditions. Risks for individual workers depend on a variety of factors, including the type of work that they are engaged in and the safety measures that are established in their workplace. 

After being injured at work, an undocumented worker may not seek compensation for damages, or go to get the medical care that they need, due to a lack of access to the healthcare system, fear of deportation, and a limited ability to speak English. If you are struggling to access the benefits you need and protect your rights after a workplace accident, then a dedicated attorney from our Indian Wells law firm can represent you. 

Can an Undocumented Worker Sue Their Employer in California?

Under California and federal law, employers are required to provide a safe and secure workplace for all their employees. Maintaining a safe workplace includes:

  • Providing adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) to all workers who need it
  • Properly and regularly training all employees in safe work practices
  • Establishing a safety and emergency protocol, and making sure that it is fully implemented and up to date

In cases where employers are not adequately ensuring the safety of their employees, and this negligence leads to an injury, undocumented workers can take their employers to court.

However, in such cases, it must be proven that the employer or the individual who was responsible for the accident had malicious intent or was exceptionally reckless. If you have been injured as a result of egregious work conditions, you may have a fear of coming forward about your situation due to a threat of retaliation by the employer.

Fortunately, an undocumented worker injury lawyer from English Lloyd & Armenta can help you gather adequate evidence to back your case, file all the necessary paperwork, and represent you in court.

Can Indian Wells Undocumented Workers Get Workers’ Compensation? 

Yes, if a worker develops a condition or sustains an injury due to a workplace accident or workplace circumstances, then they are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, no matter their immigration status. The following steps are required to get workers’ compensation benefits:

  • Report the Accident: It’s critical to report a workplace accident as soon as it happens to the relevant workplace authorities. Note the names of the individuals involved in the accident, along with the time, date, location, and details of the incident.
  • See a Healthcare Provider: Get a diagnosis and treatment for your workplace injuries. It’s important to keep all relevant paperwork associated with your doctor’s visit, such as medical bills, diagnostics, and treatment plans.
  • Collect Evidence: You will need to collect evidence of both the accident and your subsequent injuries. This can include videos and photos from the incident as well as accounts from eyewitnesses about what happened. If your illness or injury developed over time, then you will need to adequately document the conditions that led to your situation.
  • Fill Out a Claim Form: After you notify your employer about your accident, they should produce a workers’ compensation form for you to fill out. In it, you will include details of the accident and your injuries. You are not required to answer questions about your immigration status, and this cannot be used as a basis to deny you the compensation that you deserve.
  • File a Workers’ Comp Claim: After filling out the workers’ compensation claim form, give it back to your employer. They will sign it and send it to their insurance company. If your employer is refusing to file the claim form, or threatening you with retaliation, a dedicated attorney from English Lloyd & Armenta can help defend you and get you the compensation that you are entitled to.

After submitting the claim form, there is a period of time when your case will be under investigation by the workers’ compensation insurance company. As a general rule, they have 30 days to give you an answer and get you the compensation that you need. They may request additional evidence or clarification on some details, to which you are required to respond. If you fail to respond within 90 days, the insurance company can cancel your claim.

What If I Can’t Pay for Medical Expenses Prior to My Workers’ Comp Payment?

It is critical to receive adequate healthcare treatment for your workplace injuries to ensure your health and well-being. It also allows you to adequately document your injuries so that you can get the workers’ compensation benefits that you need.  If you have been injured in an accident at work and are in need of medical treatment but do not have adequate funds to pay, or have not yet received your workers’ compensation payment, you have a right to receive healthcare services under California law. 

As of January 1, 2024, all undocumented workers are eligible for coverage under Medi-CAL, which is California state’s healthcare coverage system. Under Medi-CAL, you can receive emergency services for your injuries, including hospitalization, as well as critical outpatient care. Prescription medications and physical and occupational therapy are also covered for your injury treatment.

If you are avoiding approaching the healthcare system out of fear of threats or deportation, you must know that, under the law, you do not have to provide any information about your immigration status, and healthcare providers cannot ask you for this information. If you are struggling with accessing adequate healthcare services for your workplace injuries as an undocumented worker, then the dedicated team at English Lloyd & Armenta can support you.

Is My Employer Required to Have Workers’ Compensation Insurance?

Yes, your employer is required to have workers’ compensation insurance by law, which is a necessary measure to protect all workers who have been injured at the workplace or as a result of work-related activity. If you are injured on the job and your employer doesn’t have workers’ comp, then you can sue them in court, no matter your immigration status. During your California court case, your immigration status is not allowed to be considered as part of the verdict or even asked for.

Workers’ compensation payments are available to all workers, whether they were at fault for the accident that resulted in their injuries or not. Under workers’ compensation, employees can get medical expenses covered, as well as lost wages and vocational retraining. It’s important to note that many undocumented workers are not eligible for retraining benefits, and it may be difficult to recover lost wages if they were fired as a result of their injuries or retaliation.

If your employer does not have workers’ compensation and you have been injured on the job, then you may be feeling hesitant to take them to court if you are undocumented in Indian Wells. By working with our compassionate workers’ compensation legal team, you can rest assured that your rights are protected and that we can defend you against any factors that could impact your immigration status or threaten your presence in the country.

Don’t Wait: Secure Your Post-Accident Rights Today

Getting in an accident at work is not only scary and emotionally rattling, but it can also result in injuries that have a severe impact on your life. To deal with your workplace injuries, you may have to invest hours of time and thousands of dollars in getting the treatment you need, thus losing the ability to work and take care of your family.

However, you have a right to workplace benefits despite your immigration status in California. You can get the support you need to heal from your accident and get back to your employment. Contact an Indian Wells undocumented worker injury attorney from English Lloyd & Armenta today to get started.

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