The United States is home to one-fifth of all the world’s migrants, as of 2017. In 2016 there were more than 43 million immigrants living in America, which accounted for 13.5% of the total population according to American Community Survey data. Yet in 2016 only 753,060 people were actually naturalized as citizens of the United States.
With so many immigrants living in the country, many people wonder about immigrant injury rights. Can an illegal immigrant sue, for example? Can illegal immigrants sue for personal injury in particular, especially when it occurs on the job? There are immigrant injury rights and it’s important for everyone to know what they are.
Rights, Risks and States
For illegal immigrants, the right to sue and the risks that come from suing will vary by state. The good news is that the right to sue those who cause us injury because of their negligence is open to all, no matter where you come from or what your status is. The bad news is that every state’s court authorities may or may not be proactively cooperating with immigration authorities. This means that while you have the right to sue and may very well bring a successful lawsuit, in some states this could mean a knock at the door from immigration authorities once the lawsuit is finished.
However, no matter what immigration authorities decide you have the right under the law to bring a lawsuit against anyone who causes you injury if you believe it was their negligence that caused the injury. You also have the right to be free of harassment from those you are sue and from their lawyers. If a lawyer threatens your immigration status in order to get you to drop a suit, you should report them immediately. Finally, you have the right to assume that your immigration status will have no effect on the lawsuit itself or on your right to claim damages.
Types of Damages That Fall Under Immigrant Injury Rights
Anyone, including illegal immigrants, has the right to sue for damages to compensate them for medical expenses, lost income, and mental pain and suffering caused by the negligent behavior of another party. Sometimes, you may even be eligible for back wages, but this depends on individual state laws. Personal injury could be caused by a workplace accident, by a faulty product, by a medical malpractice mistake, by faulty construction, from an auto accident, from an animal attack, or from many other things. What determines your immigration injury rights in these cases is your status as a human being: not your immigration status. A person’s negligence is responsible for the harm done to any human being: not just harm done to America citizens.
What Should I Do If I’ve Been Injured?
If you’ve suffered an injury that was the result of another person’s negligence, the first step is to call a personal injury lawyer. An immigrant personal injury lawyer will be familiar with all the rights afforded to anyone under United States law, as well as with the specific sensitivities of your situation. He or she will be best able to advise you on what to do and can help you source other assistance like translation help and medical services.
If you’ve been injured by someone else, you don’t have to be an American citizen to have rights under the law. Contact an immigrant injury lawyer and find out about your immigrant injury rights.