If you are an immigrant living and working in North Carolina and have been injured on the job, you may be hesitant to file a workers’ compensation claim for fear that it could negatively impact your immigration status.
The fear you are experiencing is understandable, as immigration laws can be complex and confusing.
However, it’s essential to understand that filing a workers’ compensation claim should not affect your immigration status in North Carolina.
Workers’ Compensation for Immigration: What You Need to Know
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that provides benefits to employees who are injured or become ill due to their job.
In North Carolina, most employers must carry workers’ compensation insurance to protect their employees.
The benefits provided by workers’ compensation typically include payment of medical bills, replacement of lost wages, and compensation for permanent disabilities resulting from a work-related injury or disease.
As an immigrant, you can file a workers’ compensation claim in North Carolina regardless of your immigration status.
North Carolina’s workers’ compensation laws do not discriminate against employees based on their immigration status.
Your employer cannot retaliate against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim regardless of whether you are a documented or undocumented worker.
Do not fear filing a workers’ compensation claim for immigration concerns. Instead, arm yourself with knowledge and an experienced attorney.
Immigration & North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Law
The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act (NCWCA) provides that workers’ compensation benefits are available to all eligible employees, regardless of their immigration status.
The NCWCA specifically prohibits discrimination based on immigration status, so you should not be treated differently than any other employee.
If you are an immigrant working in North Carolina injured on the job, you have the same right to file a workers’ compensation claim as any other employee.
You should not be discriminated against or treated differently because of your immigration status.
However, it is always a good idea to seek the assistance of a workers’ compensation lawyer to ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the compensation you deserve.
Will Filing a Claim Impact My Immigration Case?
One concern you may have as an immigrant is whether filing a workers’ compensation claim could impact your immigration status.
It’s important to note that workers’ compensation benefits are not considered public, and receiving them should not affect your immigration status in North Carolina.
Workers’ compensation benefits are an entitlement based on your employment and are not means-tested or dependent on your immigration status.
However, it’s always a good idea to consult with an immigration lawyer to understand the potential implications of any legal process on your immigration status.
An immigration lawyer can provide personalized advice based on your unique circumstances and help you navigate any immigration-related concerns that may arise from filing a workers’ compensation claim.
Steps to Filing a Workers’ Comp Claim
Filing a workers’ comp claim can be a complex process, and it’s often helpful to seek the assistance of a workers’ compensation lawyer.
A lawyer who is experienced in workers’ compensation for immigration issues can help guide you through the process and ensure that your rights are protected.
Here is a quick reference guide to the steps to follow to file a workers’ comp claim in North Carolina:
1. Report Your Injury to Your Employer
It is essential to report it immediately. In North Carolina, you must notify your employer of the injury within 30 days of the accident or when you became aware of the injury.
If you fail to report the injury on time, you may lose your right to workers’ compensation benefits.
2. Seek Medical Treatment
You should seek medical treatment for your injury immediately. Your employer may have a designated healthcare provider that you must see for your initial treatment.
Ensure you provide a detailed account of how the injury occurred, and keep copies of all medical records and bills.
3. File a Workers’ Compensation Claim
To file a workers’ comp claim in North Carolina, you must complete a Form 18 and submit it to the North Carolina Industrial Commission.
The form requires you to provide information about your injury, employer, and medical treatment.
You must file the form within two years of the injury or two years of your last payment of workers’ compensation benefits.
4. Wait for a Decision
Once you have filed a claim, the North Carolina Industrial Commission will review it and issue a decision. They may require additional information or schedule a hearing to determine the validity of your claim.
5. Appeal the Decision
If the North Carolina Industrial Commission denies your claim, you can appeal the decision.
You can request a hearing before the Commission, and you may also have the option to appeal the decision to the North Carolina Court of Appeals.
Workers’ Compensation Lawyers: How They Can Help
If you’ve been injured on the job and are considering filing a workers’ compensation claim, it’s wise to seek the guidance of an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer.
A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you understand your rights and navigate the complex legal process of filing a claim.
They can also protect your interests and advocate to ensure you receive the benefits you are entitled to under North Carolina’s workers’ compensation laws.
If you are concerned about how filing a workers’ comp claim might affect your immigration status, you should speak with a workers’ compensation lawyer who can provide the guidance and support you need.
They can help you understand your rights and ensure you are treated fairly and justly under the law.
North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers
Can filing a workers’ comp claim affect your immigration status?
The attorneys at Mehta & McConnell want you to know that you have the right to file a workers’ compensation claim without fear that it will negatively affect your immigration status.
We are here to assist you. Call us to schedule a free consultation today.