Ohio Illegal Immigrant Workers’ Comp. adjustments proposed

Ohio Senator Bill Seitz last Monday introduced a bill that seeks to prohibit illegal and unauthorized aliens from receiving compensation and certain benefits under Ohio's Workers' Compensation Law. [ Text ]

Among the bill's more substantial points enacting are:

•Sec. 2307.82 (B) Except as provided in division (C) of this section, no court in this state has jurisdiction over a claim for damages suffered by an illegal alien or an unauthorized alien by reason of personal injury sustained or occupational disease contracted by the illegal alien or unauthorized alien in the course of employment caused by the wrongful act or omission or neglect of the employer. Except as provided in division (C) of this section, an illegal alien or unauthorized alien assumes the risk of incurring such injury or contracting an occupational disease, and that assumption is a complete bar to a recovery of damages for such injury or occupational disease.

•(C) A court in this state has jurisdiction over a claim brought by an illegal alien or unauthorized alien against an employer for damages suffered by reason of personal injury sustained or occupational disease contracted in the course of employment caused by the wrongful act or omission or neglect of the employer if the employer employed the illegal alien or unauthorized alien knowing that the illegal alien or unauthorized alien was not authorized to work under section 101(a) of the "Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986," 100 Stat. 3360, 8 U.S.C. 1324a.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent an illegal alien or an unauthorized alien from bringing a claim under section 2745.01 of the Revised Code against an employer in a court of competent jurisdiction for an intentional tort allegedly committed by the employer against the illegal alien or unauthorized alien.

•Sec. 4123.513. (A) Except as otherwise provided in divisions (B) and (C) of this section, if a claim is denied because the claimant is, or if the claimant is a dependent of an individual who died as a result of suffering an injury or contracting an occupational disease, that individual was an unauthorized alien, the claimant's employer or the individual's employer is not liable to that claimant for damages suffered by reason of personal injury sustained or occupational disease contracted in the course of employment caused by the wrongful act or omission or neglect of
the employer. For such a claimant, filing a claim under Chapter 4121., 4123., 4127., or 4131. of the Revised Code is the exclusive remedy against the employer on account of injury, disease, or death in the course of and arising out of the claimant's or deceased employee's employment. Notwithstandingsection 4123.77 of the Revised Code and except as provided in division (B) of this section, an irrebuttable presumption exists that the individual assumed the risk of incurring an injury or contracting an occupational disease at the workplace, or dying as a result of such an injury or occupational disease, when performing services or providing labor for that employer.

•(B) An employer is liable to a claimant whose claim is denied because the claimant is or the deceased individual who is the subject of the claim was an unauthorized alien for damages suffered by reason of personal injury sustained or occupational disease contracted in the course of employment caused by the wrongful act or omission or neglect of the employer if the claimant establishes, by clear and convincing evidence, that the employer employed the claimant or the deceased individual knowing that the claimant or deceased individual was not authorized to work under section 101(a) of the "Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986," 100 Stat. 3360, 8 U.S.C. 1324a, on the date the claimant or deceased individual suffered the injury or contracted the occupational disease and that such knowledge was not solely the result of communications made by the claimant or the deceased individual to the employer. An employer may not assert any of the common law defenses listed in section 4123.77 of the Revised Code in an action brought against the employer pursuant to this section.

•(C) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent a claimant whose claim is denied because the claimant is or the deceased individual who is the subject of the claim was an unauthorized alien from bringing a claim under section 2745.01 of the Revised Code against an employer in a court of competent jurisdiction for an intentional tort allegedly committed by the employer against the claimant or deceased individual who was the subject of the claim.