Workers’ compensation benefits are incredibly valuable when you sustain an injury on the job in Texas and need medical care or have to take time off to heal. These benefits help replace a portion of your wages and take care of medical expenses. Many times, without the benefits for workers’ compensation, workers would be in trouble because they could not afford the expenses related to an injury.
When you are an undocumented worker, though, the idea of applying for workers’ compensation can be intimidating. According to Pacific Standard, there is often a fear that immigration status will trigger alerts to immigration officials, and a workers’ compensation claim could mean a ticket out of the country.
Reporting your status
When you apply for workers’ compensation, the insurer gets a lot of information about you. This will include information about your immigration status. An insurer could use that information to tip off immigration officials, which could result in the coming to deport or detain you. So, this fear is legitimate.
In some cases where insurers reported undocumented workers, they also faced additional charges because they used fake IDs when obtaining medical care. In today’s immigration climate, this would be all that is necessary to get you deported from the country.
The flip side of getting help from workers’ compensation is trying to handle the situation on your own. This is not any better than taking your chances with immigration officials. Not receiving proper care could lead to long-term health issues. It also could mean serious financial issues for you and your family.
Some states have laws or are looking to enact laws that help prevent insurers from reporting immigration status. The goal with such laws is to help you feel safe about getting help.