Undocumented Worker Loses Bid to Recover Lost Wages Due to Fraud

Two years ago in Balbuena v. IDR Realty LLC. [/i], the New York Court of Appeals ruled that an undocumented worker does not automatically lose the right to pursue a lost wage claim because of his unauthorized immigration status. In Balbuena, the court zeroed in on whether the plaintiff provided false documentation in order to obtain his job as a crucial fact and in the absence of such a finding, the plaintiff could seek lost wages.

In Macedo v. J.D. Posillico, a New York motion court held that a worker who submits fradulent work documents including a bogus social security number loses the right to pursue a lost wage claim. Focusing on the language of Balbuena, the court emphasized that an unauthorized alien is penalized under the prevailing immigration laws where the employer takes reasonable measures to confirm an employee’s right to work in the United States and the worker perpetrates a fraud.

Macedo v J.D. Posillico, Inc.
2008 NY Slip Op 51787(U)

Supreme Court, New York County
Judge Carol Robinson Edmead