It can be an overwhelming experience when a non-citizen working in the United States is injured in a workplace accident. While it can be difficult seeing the light at the end of the tunnel following such an incident, it’s important that as a non-citizen, you seek out the legal advice of an experienced workplace injury attorney.
Non-citizens that suffer an injury while working in an oilfield still have certain rights and may pursue compensation for their injuries.
If you – as a non-citizen – have suffered an injury in an oilfield accident, seek the legal expertise of Lapeze & Johns. Our Houston attorneys are prepared to help get you the funds necessary to recover from your trauma and suffering.
Constitutional Rights Apply to Non-Citizens
There is a wide range of foreign individuals living in the United States. Some are in the process of obtaining a green card, working on naturalization, or obtaining documentation for legal residency. Others may be individuals that are undocumented and are considered to be ‘illegal aliens.’
It can be extremely intimidating for an individual that is undocumented to take action when injured in a workplace accident. Such an accident can be a very traumatic experience that results in temporary to permanent injuries, loss of compensation, and accumulating medical bills.
Every worker deserves protection when they are involved in these types of accidents.
As per section one of the Fourteenth Amendment, “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
Though some may argue that the constitution does not specify foreign citizens under this description, it has been reiterated over and over again that the implied ‘person’ applies to non-documented individuals as well, as they are expected to presume obedience under the law and, in return, are given equal protection.
Tactics of Corporations and Employers
The oilfield industry is run by powerful corporations, and because of this, an oilfield injury accident claim can become legally complex – for anyone. The truth is that oilfield industry employers and their insurance companies want to avoid paying out altogether.
This can come by the means of manipulation including giving injured individuals untrue information about their legal options, threatening safety, insinuating deportation, or trying to take the case to the federal level.
It is important to know that you should not let the fear of deportation stop you from pursuing the money necessary to recover.
Steps to Take When Filing an Oilfield Injury Claim as a Non-Citizen
There are certain actions you should take to protect yourself as a foreign citizen and to secure your claim from your workplace injury. A qualified workplace injury attorney can provide you with further instruction you on what actions to take.
General guidelines will include:
1. Consult an expert oilfield injury lawyer.
Oilfield injury lawyers are familiar with the tactics used by employers and their insurance companies to avoid a payout.
2. Know your legal protections.
Foreign citizens are protected by the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
3. Build your case with evidence.
It is important to have a strong recollection of the events, as well as maintain medical records and any legal documentation. The more evidence you have the stronger your case will be.
4. File a timely claim.
If you wish to seek compensation, time is of the essence. Submit the necessary documentation as soon as possible to get the process going. These types of cases can take time to resolve and so you will want to get the process started immediately after an injury.
Non-citizens can file a workplace injury claim such as an oilfield accident. Lapeze & Johns can help.
The knowledgeable Gulf Coast oilfield accident attorneys at Lapeze & Johns have years of experience in litigating against negligent parties that have put foreign workers in danger. We help non-citizens navigate the legally complex and sometimes turbulent process of filing against intimidating parties.
You are not alone.
For more information and pursuing an oilfield workplace injury claim, contact Lapeze and Johns today at 713-766-0075.