Undocumented workers may be denied worker comp benefits in Ohio

The Ohio House voted 62-30 on Tuesday in favor of legislation that would block undocumented workers injured on the job from collecting workers’ compensation benefits.

Sponsors of the bill, state Reps. Bill Seitz, R-Cincinnati, and Larry Householder, R-Glenford, say the bill sends a message that Ohio doesn’t support illegal immigration.

The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.

Ohio House Minority Leader Fred Strahorn, D-Dayton, said in a written statement that businesses that hire undocumented workers should have to take responsibility for workplace injuries, regardless of immigration status.

Related: Ohio may deny workers’ comp benefits to undocumented workers

“Under House Bill 380, employers who rig the system will get off scot-free and taxpayers will be left with the bill,” he said. Democrats opposed to the bill said it would create an incentive for businesses to hire undocumented workers because they wouldn’t be eligible to file a workers’ comp claim.

Workers’ compensation insurance rates are based on in part on the claim history of the employer.

There is no data available on how many undocumented workers are receiving workers’ comp benefits.

About the Author