There are few exceptions to the fact that undocumented immigrants are given most of the same employment rights that are provided to legal U. S. citizens. This principle applies not only to federal laws but to California law as well. This is good news for residents of California who are working as undocumented immigrants.
What laws apply?
In general, every law that protects documented citizens who are employees in California also applies to undocumented immigrants who are employed in the state. The only exceptions to this law typically pertain to unemployment insurance and the ability to unionize. Outside of those exceptions, laws that govern wages, overtime, allowable hours and more are applicable to both documented and undocumented employees.
Is state disability insurance available?
Yes, in California, state disability insurance is offered to undocumented immigrants. The fact that the funds are available to undocumented immigrants goes back to the fact that the program is funded by employees. The state believes it is only right for all employees to have access to these funds.
Is paid family leave available?
In California, Paid Family Leave provides between 60% and 70% of an employee’s wages for up to six weeks if they are missing work in order to provide care for a critically ill family member. While there are criteria that have to bet met, Paid Family Leave is available to undocumented employees in the state.
Do anti-discrimination laws apply?
Thankfully, the answer to this question is yes. Undocumented employees are protected by the laws that prohibit discrimination in the workplace.
Undocumented employees may want to work with an attorney who is well-versed in U.S. immigration if they believe they are not being afforded these protections in their workplace. This attorney may review their claims and help their clients understand what legal options are available for their situation.