New York Appeals Court Upholds Workers’ Compensation Claim

November 3, 2008

A New York State appeals court has upheld workers’ compensation benefits for an illegal alien injured while working as a parking lot attendant despite falsely using another man’s identification.

Benjamin Amoah, a Ghana native, got the job in 2003 with Mallah Management LLC. Compensation benefits from the company’s insurer began after his 2005 injury. Amoah disclosed his real identity after the man who had lent him the identification documents demanded a share of the money.

An administrative law judge found Amoah’s use of fraudulent documentation didn’t preclude benefits for work-related injuries. The Workers Compensation Board affirmed.

The Appellate Division of State Supreme Court agreed Thursday, concluding a criminal violation of federal immigration law does not pre-empt the state law.

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