Immigrant Workers Have Rights That Are Too Often Ignored

Construction worker

It’s a devastating headline that occurs too often—an immigrant laborer is seriously injured or killed while working on a job that has taken advantage of him and cut corners at the expense of safety. What’s even worse, these contractors and construction companies seek out undocumented workers knowing they are desperate for work and are too afraid to seek help and better conditions. What these workers don’t realize is—whether documented or not—they have rights once they are hired for a job.

Our free download, 8 Questions You May Have as an Undocumented Worker(written in English and Spanish) provides answers that many undocumented workers may have about benefits, right to take legal action, risk of deportation and caring for family after an injury.

Recently Delfino Jesus Velazquez Mendizabal, 43, was killed while working on a construction site at the Dana Ford Lincoln car dealership in Staten Island. The construction company he was working for, Formica Construction, did not have permits to do the work. They were demolishing interior partitions, when a large section collapsed and trapped Mendizabal under the debris.

Like many of the companies that violate the law, this was not Formica Constructions’s first violation. In 2007, one of the construction company’s owners, Kenneth Formica, pleaded guilty in 2007 to criminally negligent homicide in a case stemming from the death of a worker who was buried when a trench collapsed. Mr. Formica was sentenced to 16 weekends in jail after admitting he knew that the trench, which he helped dig, was unsafe, according to court documents.

These companies knowingly put their worker’s health and safety at risk to cut cost and save time.

Learn Your Rights as An Undocument Worker Who Was Injured

Have questions? Give our construction and work accident lawyers a call today. We can help, just as we have helped other undocumented workers . If you are injured on the job, you have rights.

You can:

  • Collect workers compensation
  • Sue for damages, especially important when injuries are severe and require expensive medical treatment, time off from the job, and long-lasting effects on your quality of life and ability to care for your family.
  • The laws are designed to punish the employer, not the employee. In all of our years, we have never seen a worker deported after filing a claim against an employer.
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