Hi everyone, I’m Jamie Gilmore, an employment attorney with Bailey & Galyen. In my newsletter messages, I try to focus on areas of law that are of particular importance now. Last night, I read a social media post from an attorney asking how an employer can best avoid paying an undocumented worker his unpaid wages, wages that employee rightfully earned and is legally owed. I receive calls every day from employees owed wages from their employer. Most of these calls are not from undocumented workers because undocumented workers are afraid to expose themselves or their family members to the immigration system. Frequently, these workers are not paid minimum wages, overtime, and are subject to illegal discrimination.
I hope that this video will reach these important workers and let them know the employment laws in this country protect the undocumented workers the same way as any other employee. Federal anti-discrimination laws protect all employees in the United States, regardless of their citizenship or work eligibility. Immigration status is not relevant at the time of filing a lawsuit or a discrimination complaint.
Undocumented workers are entitled to unpaid wages and overtime under a variety of federal and state laws, including the FLSA and breach of employment contract claims for wages earned but not paid. Federal anti-discrimination and anti-retaliation laws such as Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family Medical Leave Act all protect undocumented workers the same as other employees. Additionally, the Immigration and Nationality Act and Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 both protect undocumented workers and prohibit retaliation and intimidation for asserting their legal rights.
The employment attorneys at Bailey & Galyen are aware that filing a claim against your employer is risky. We are aware that this risk is what deters some many undocumented workers from asserting their rights. Employers act illegally if they report undocumented employees to ICE because the undocumented worker asserted his legal rights opposing the employer’s unlawful actions. At Bailey & Galyen, we offer a free consultation with experienced employment attorneys and staff to give you the advice and guidance you need to make a decision about your legal rights. Call me today to discuss your employment situation.