- November 13, 2017
- In workers Comp
Under California law, your immigration status does not impact your ability to recover after getting injured in an accident caused by another party. This includes cases related to any type of personal injury and wrongful death. Governor Jerry Brown has made sure that illegal immigration status cannot be used as an excuse for at-fault motorists or their insurance carriers to compensate injured accident victims.
The History of Injury Claims Filed by Undocumented Immigrants
The famous case of Rodriguez v. Kline set precedent in 1986, forming the basis of receiving compensation in personal injury cases in California. The undocumented immigrant plaintiff, in this case, sought compensation for lost wages and health care services.
The jury awarded compensation according to the wages and the health care expenses to the plaintiff’s home country. The resulting compensation was much lower than the plaintiff would have typically received in the U.S.
The court also admitted into evidence the plaintiff’s record of legal status. This undoubtedly discouraged most undocumented immigrants from filing personal injury cases for years to come, in fear of getting deported.
The Big Change in 2016
The Rodriguez case was cited case law for three decades. The case also continued to haunt undocumented immigrants and cheated them out of fair compensation they deserved in personal injury cases.
In 2016, Governor Jerry Brown presented and approved Assembly Bill 2159. The bill finally ended this distinction. The bill provides protection to undocumented immigrants who are injured in personal injury accidents. It allows accident victims to seek compensation for their injuries regardless of their immigration status.
More specifically, this bill’s description clearly reads:
“This bill would provide that in a civil action for personal injury or wrongful death, evidence of a person’s immigration status shall not be admitted into evidence, nor shall discovery into a person’s immigration status be permitted, except as specified.”
The bottom line is that if you are injured as a result of another party’s negligence, you have certain rights under the law. You need to hire an experienced personal injury attorney to enforce these rights and help you get the full compensation that you deserve.
Contact an Experienced Los Angeles Accident Lawyer
At the Law Offices of Samer Habbas, our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys are experienced in handling all types of accidents. If you were involved in an accident caused by another party and were seriously injured, you need aggressive legal representation. An experienced accident lawyer can help you get the full compensation you and your child deserve.
For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our Los Angeles accident attorneys, please call us at 888.848.5084.