Undocumented Immigrant Granted Calif. Law License

Sergio Garcia had graduated law school and passed the bar but was denied a license because of his undocumented status

By Andrew Lopez
|  Thursday, Jan 2, 2014  |  Updated 4:44 PM CDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Dramatic LA News Photos

NBC Bay Area

Sergio Garcia is seen in this file image.

Photos and Videos

Undocumented Professionals Hope for Revived American Dream

Sergio Garcia, an undocumented attorney, has met all the requirements to be a licensed attorney but he is currently unable to practice due to his undocumented status. Garcia is hoping for a favorable court ruling next Wednesday as his case makes it to the California Supreme Court. John Cadiz Klemack reports from Van Nuys for NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Aug. 27, 2013.
More Photos and Videos

An immigrant unable to practice law because of his undocumented status has been granted a law license by California’s highest court Thursday, NBC News reports.

Sergio Garcia took his case to the California Supreme Court in May. Oral arguments took place in September.

New Laws Coming to California in 2014

Garcia, a law school graduate who passed the state bar, told NBC News that he is "speechless, tired, relieved," and is "glad it's over." 

Plastic Bag Ban Begins in LA 

The U.S. Department of Justice opposed allowing him a license because as an undocumented person he wasn’t allowed to receive any benefits, Garcia said in a statement. Garcia said the Court agreed with the assessment, but also stated that a law could be passed to allow him and others in his situation to be granted a law license.

Study Finds Texting, Dialing Dangerous While Driving, Talking Less So

A law passed seven days later allowing courts to grant a law license to an undocumented person who had met all the standard requirements. Gov. Jerry Brown signed the the bill on Oct. 5, 2013.

The law went into effect on Jan. 1, 2014.

The Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles issued a statement after the ruling, saying the court's decision "bodes well for the future of the United States of America."

"The Dreams of many became much closer to becoming a reality today that the California Supreme Court ruled in favor of young professionals, like Sergio Garcia, who have met every requirement in the book to practice their craft but happen to be undocumented immigrants," the statement said.
 

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out