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Immigrant Workers Eligible for Workers’ Comp Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

Farm workers harvesting yellow peppers in California

California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara has recently stated that all California workers, regardless of their immigration status, are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits if impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Lara said Monday that he was following the lead of Governor Gavin Newsom, who issued an executive order March 12th, 2020 stating that employees may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits if exposed to COVID-19 as part of their regular or expected work duties. In a news release, Lara said:

“This unprecedented pandemic has sparked questions and concerns among essential workers in the immigrant community who are showing up for work every day, bringing us vital goods and services. Hard-working Californians who are exposed to COVID-19 are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they fall ill, regardless of their immigration status.”

According to Lara, insurance companies have been reminded that immigrant workers are eligible for compensation under California law. The notices state that ailments caused by COVID-19 during the course of employment are just as eligible as any other disease or injury that occurred on the job. Claims cannot be denied “on the basis of the injured worker’s immigration status,” according to the notice. A message in support of Lara’s decision was sent by the California Labor Federation.

As of noon, Tuesday, April 7th, there were 16,413 confirmed cases of COVID-19, also called the coronavirus, in California, according to figures compiled by the Los Angeles Times. The virus has been responsible for nearly 400 deaths in the area, according to the figures.

Workers’ Comp Assistance for Immigrant Workers in California

Alvandi Law Group, P.C. in Orange County proudly offers are legal services to immigrant workers throughout Southern California. We know that every worker has the right to fair workers’ compensation benefits when exposed to the coronavirus, no matter their background, occupation, or immigrant status. If you have any questions about how to file a workers’ compensation claim as an immigrant worker, please call us at (800) 980-6905. You can also get our help for managing a claim that has already been filed but was denied, delayed, or undervalued by the responding insurance company.



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