If you are an undocumented immigrant in Virginia, it is natural for you to want to avoid situations involving police officers or the legal system while you work on obtaining lawful immigration status.
However, what happens if you are the victim of a car accident and sustain serious injuries? You may want to bring a personal injury action against the person who caused your accident and recover compensation but perhaps you are worried about how this will affect your immigration status.
You can still file a personal injury lawsuit
Additionally, you might question if you are even able to file a lawsuit as an undocumented immigrant. The answer is yes, you can file a personal injury lawsuit, no matter your immigration status.
You will need to file your personal injury action within Virginia’s two-year statute of limitations; however, other than that requirement, you have the same rights as a U.S. citizen.
To recover compensation, you will need to prove negligence. This requires showing that the driver who caused your accident violated their legal duty to drive safely, and this caused your damages.
Even knowing that you can file a personal injury claim after an accident, you might still be hesitant to initiate a lawsuit.
Your immigration status cannot be held against you
This is understandable. Worries about deportation or that your citizenship status being used against you are common.
However, it is unethical for your immigration status to be used against you in a lawsuit. You must be treated the exact same way as a U.S. citizen.
Accident victims typically need compensation for many things, including their medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.
It is best to talk with a personal injury attorney about your situation to learn about your options and chance of success. Be honest with your attorney about your immigration status. They are here to help.