California Supreme Court grants law license to illegal immigrant

January 3, 2014
Sergio Garcia

Sergio Garcia

The California Supreme Court unanimously agreed Thursday to allow an undocumented immigrant the right to practice law. [LA Times]

Chico resident Sergio C. Garica, 36, passed the state bar four years ago but has yet to receive federal approval of his green card. He is the first undocumented immigrant in the U.S. to receive a law license.

The state Supreme Court, which has the final say on licensing lawyers, approved Garcia’s admission to the California Bar Association because the Legislature passed a law last year clearing the way, Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye wrote in the ruling.

“The fact that an undocumented immigrant’s presence in this country violates federal statutes is not itself a sufficient or persuasive basis for denying undocumented immigrants, as a class, admission to the State Bar, Cantil-Sakuye wrote.

A 1996 federal law prohibits state agencies from issuing licenses or benefits to illegal immigrants. The emergency legislation passed by the Assembly and Senate in Sept. and signed by Governor Jerry Brown in Oct. provided exemptions for law licenses in California.

Garcia moved with his family from Mexico to the U.S. when he was 17 months old. He returned to Mexico when he was 9 and reentered the U.S. without authorization at age 17.

The federal government accepted Garcia’s petition for a green card in 1995 but has yet to issue it.

 


9 Comments

  1. Old Salt says:

    We are no longer America…
    We have become the United States Estado de México

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1

  2. SLOBIRD says:

    We have certainly become a society of lawlessness. Marijuana is legal because Federal Government is not enforcing laws, illegal immigrants are now legal (social programs, education, driver licenses) getting a free pass thanks to Federal Government, government rewards banks and Wall Street with no/low interest and bailouts, etc. (these representatives go to the White House almost more than any other business segment according to records), Insurance changes made individually through the White House, and of course, just look at what is happening in Sacramento and Washington DC with situations like Ron Calderon, Steinberg, Perez, Trevor Martin, Lynne Stewart and of course our own local issues with BOS, CAPSLO, Social Services, etc. Under the leadership of President Obama and Eric Holder as the chief law enforcement officer of the land only the actions that this administration think are right are right. Law and ORDER are gone and we sat back drinking our Starbucks and reading our Facebook or talking on the phone and let it happen!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 3

    • LameCommenter says:

      SLOBIRD, I couldn’t have said it better myself, nor even as well. An excellent summary of Obamacentric cultural and social decline. Five Stars!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 3

  3. Truth says:

    AS PER c f THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT;

    The practice of Law CAN NOT be licensed by any state/State.
    c f (Schware v. Board of Examiners, 353 U.S. 238, 239)

    The practice of Law is AN OCCUPATION OF COMMON RIGHT!
    c f (Sims v. Aherns, 271 S.W. 720 (1925))

    The “CERTIFICATE” from the State Supreme Court:

    ONLY authorizes,

    To practice Law “IN COURTS” as a member of the STATE JUDICIAL BRANCH OF GOVERNMENT.

    Can ONLY represent WARDS OF THE COURT, INFANTS, PERSONS OF UNSOUND MIND (SEE CORPUS JURIS SECUNDUM, VOLUME 7, SECTION 4.)

    “CERTIFICATE” IS NOT A LICENSE to practice Law AS AN OCCUPATION, nor to DO BUSINESS AS A LAW FIRM!!!

    The “STATE BAR” CARD IS NOT A LICENSE!!! It is a “UNION DUES CARD”.

    The “BAR” is a “PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION.”

    1. Like the Actors Union, Painters Union, etc.

    2. No other association, EVEN DOCTORS, issue their own license. ALL ARE ISSUED BY THE STATE.

    It is a NON-GOVERNMENTAL PRIVATE ASSOCIATION.

    There are NO licenses’ to grant! Not one attorney can produce a license, only a “BAR
    CARD”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

    • Jorge Estrada says:

      That being said, in some cases the State Court still does set the rate that these club members charge their perfectly sane clients. I personally don’t care if the card represents an association, union, actors guild or gang, they routinely charge $450 an hour.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 8

  4. Jorge Estrada says:

    This is absolutely no surprise! I commend Sergio for going after a better life through his hard work, regardless of the risk. By example, he’ll be a great addition our ailling culture.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 31

    • Pelican1 says:

      Why didn’t he “go after a better life” legally? How does a person who is here ILLEGALLY practice the LAW and uphold the constitution of the United States and California?
      I assume it’s simply a matter of time before he runs for President.
      The supreme court should be ashamed of itself.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 3

      • Jorge Estrada says:

        First he was brought here at 17 months old brought back to Mexico at 9 years old and returned at 17, still a minor. We can’t pick our parents but we can make choices based on what we know. Obviously he rightfully found the US as home through the circumstances afforeded him. I do not fault him because he was to young to stand with his back against the wall, blind folded and have his last cigarette.

        A green card and citizenship should have be granted asap, but in a country where permission to build a house is over $50K in Atascadero, the fault would likely be in the paper process.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

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