Calif. Grants Law License to Undocumented Immigrant

Alan Gomez, USA Today, January 2, 2014

The California Supreme Court granted a law license Thursday to an undocumented immigrant, a first-of-its-kind ruling that allows Sergio Garcia to practice law in his adopted state.

The question remains: Can he find work as a lawyer?

The court ruled that a combination of federal and state laws allows for Garcia, who was first brought to the USA by his parents from Mexico when he was 17 months old, to obtain the law license necessary for him to practice law in California.

The opinion was not so clear on how he can use that license.

Garcia, the justices wrote, cannot work as an employee of a law firm or any other company because of his undocumented status—federal law prohibits businesses from hiring undocumented immigrants, and he remains in that status. The opinion said he could do legal work on a pro bono basis.

The opinion was unclear on another option: whether Garcia and others in his position can work as lawyers on their own, retaining their own clients.

“We assume that a licensed undocumented immigrant will make all necessary inquiries and take appropriate steps to comply with applicable legal restrictions and will advise potential clients of any possible adverse or limiting effect the attorney’s immigration status may pose,” the opinion read.


Some were stunned by Thursday’s ruling.

“Aside from all the legal technicalities, the idea that we are having people who are in violation of federal law practicing law is almost ‘Alice in Wonderland’ kind of logic,” said Ira Mehlman of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which advocates for lower levels of legal and illegal immigration. “Everything seems to be turned on its head here.”

Garcia, 36, was first brought to the USA by his parents when he was 17 months old. After stints picking almonds and working in a grocery store, he graduated from Chico State University and the Cal Northern School of Law and passed the state bar exam in July 2009. But the state bar wouldn’t grant him a law license because of a 1996 federal law that bars people living in the country illegally from receiving professional licenses from government agencies.

During oral arguments in Garcia’s case, California Supreme Court justices discussed a provision of that law that allows for undocumented immigrants to receive licenses if a state legislature passes a law allowing it. State lawmakers moved quickly, introducing a bill to do just that in September, and Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown signed it into law Oct. 5.

The law went into effect Jan. 1, and the court ruled the next day that Garcia could be granted his license.


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  • Rush played a clip today of Sergio Garcia telling the media, when they did a random act of journalism and pressed him on the irony of an illegal alien practicing law, that it was the politicians’ fault for not making him legal.

    I thought I was the only person on Earth that arrogant.

    • Oil Can Harry

      2014: The ACLU sues for the right of illegal aliens to practice law.

      2020: The ACLU files suits to overturn the convictions of Sergio Garcia’s clients on the grounds that they didn’t receive fair trials because their defense lawyer wasn’t even a US citizen.

    • Katherine McChesney

      If I remember correctly he will not be permitted to ‘practice law’ in the courtroom.

      • tickyul

        I think his only restriction is….he cannot serve as a lawyer in any trial that involves the Federal Government

        • Alexandra1973

          I think he should only be allowed to practice law in Mexico.

        • Brian

          No. It is illegal for any American business to hire him. He can be self-employed though.

          Garcia, the justices wrote, cannot work as an employee of a law firm or any other company because of his undocumented status—federal law prohibits businesses from hiring undocumented immigrants, and he remains in that status.

    • Vito Powers

      You mean El-Rushbo actually mentioned something relating to Illegal Immigration? That’s just so unlike him. He’s usually babbling on his Democrats Bad – Republicans Good nonsense.

      • If Rush was the only way you got news, you would know that the Democrats and the RINOs are conniving to open the borders. That said, I wish he’d give it more time and more front burner treatment.

        Laura Ingraham and Mark Levin are the two big stars of talk radio in exposing open borders treachery this time around.

  • Hunter Morrow

    Anarchotyranny. What do you expect when you have two Eskimo women as senators and the courts packed with frigid fellows?

    • So CAL Snowman

      Sam Francis really nailed it with the term anarcho-tyranny. I cannot think of a better summation of what the United States has become.

      ” In spheres where the government should be busy
      in action — guarding the nation’s borders, for example — anarchy reigns. In trivial matters that, in a sane order, would not
      concern the government at all, they practice a savage tyranny”

      • Hunter Morrow

        The pigs have made it illegal to have a pet hedgehog in Califoreigna.
        This rule, not law, a rule, applies to Whites only. Yet there are three million people in califoreigna illegally and now they can practice law.

        Wouldnt it be a trip if he was your lawyer when you ran afoul of some anarcho tyrannical rule and regulation?

  • Ograf

    A criminal being made an officer of the court. Makes as much sense as putting a gay person in charge of the boyscouts I guess. I long for the days things made sense.

    • mobilebay

      I do too, Ograf. I’m old enough to remember another universe where our government protected us from the enemy. Now, it aids and abets them.

      • Spartacus

        “Remove your governments, they don’t care about you !” – Random gr0id

      • Katherine McChesney

        And seems to encourage them.

    • Brian

      It’s going to get worse. A bunch of these aliens will be amnestied and path-to-citizenshipped. The state will come after you for some bogus ‘crime’ and Jose, newly documented, will be on your jury.

  • MekongDelta69

    USA Today used the phrase, “undocumented immigrant” ten times.

    Anybody notice the phrase, “illegal alien” above?

    NO? Me neither…

    • D.B. Cooper

      Write to your local republican, unless he’s the deathly terrified of being called a racist.

      • mobilebay

        Strangely enough, D.B. I just finished sending an email to my Texas Congressman. I’ll probably have a visit from a couple of guys with dark glasses and who talk into their lapels.

      • Hunter Morrow

        Put the pens down,then, gentleman.

    • Non Humans

      A month or so back, the thought police outlawed the official use of the term “Illegals”. USA Today is just obeying and furthering the doctrine.

    • John R

      Yes, note my post. And, make no mistake: These news outlets are VERY CAREFUL of the exact words, and phrases that they use in their stories. Nothing they say is random. Slightly off topic, but I heard another story of the “Priest sex abuse scandal” the other day. All the victims of these priests were male. Most of them were adolescent boys. I heard the phrases “Roman Catholic” and of course “priest” and “pedophile” over and over again. But NEVER the words “gay” or “homosexual” EVER when discussing these cases. NEVER. They are very careful, these news people. Very careful about the specific words or phrases they use.

  • D.B. Cooper

    What this article is leaving out is what California judge paved the way for this to happen.
    Meet Chief Justice of California Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye. The first Asian in that position. On July 21, 2010, democrat who pretends to be a republican Arnold Schwarzenegger nominated Cantil-Sakauye, who is also a Republican, to succeed retiring Chief Justice of California Ronald M. George
    As I have said many times, you have to clean out your own political party before you can start working on the one you believe is 100% of the problem.

    • So CAL Snowman

      We also have a sub continental Indian (Kamala Harris) running around as our Attorney General – but she is of course a die hard communist, oops I mean democrat.

  • Luca

    This is a symbolic PR victory at the moment. He is not legally employable until he gets his papers. Unless of course MALDEF provides him with the funding to create his own law firm.

    • Brian

      I assume he will put out his own shingle, possibly given seed money by some nefarious organization, and he will spend his days helping other illegals game and skirt what remains of our immigration laws, so others can follow in his footsteps.

  • bigone4u

    Criminals granted college degrees and law licenses. California is a nut case in search of a headshrinker. Once all the decent whites have left, I’d be happy to see it fall into the ocean.

    • So CAL Snowman

      At least one decent White will stay and fight for a better tomorrow . . .

      • bigone4u

        There’s an inactive blog called lasucksbigtime. What horrible everday living conditions exist for whites in LA, which the site talks about. I also read a patriotic blog called mountain republic, which is based in northern California. There’s hope for the north.

        • itdoesnotmatter

          There’s hope for the north.
          No, bigone, there is no hope for Northern CA unless something changes radically and fast.
          We up North are infested up to our eyeballs with mestizos, Hmong, Sikhs, the low IQ breed of Chinese, myriad other Asians, Somalis, the entire offshore squatter rainbow.
          The higher functioning Asians John likes so well are found in Silicon Valley and S.F., where several Tech companies are relocating, and believe me, they are NOT appreciated by us Natives. Contrary to John’s belief, they are displacing white tech workers, form their own enclaves, do not assimilate.

      • Brian

        Some phrases come to mind:

        Countdown to Extinction
        The System Has Failed
        United Abominations

    • Major

      I just pray that the San Andreas fault sends the entire looney bin deep into the Pacific.

  • Alexandra1973

    My reaction can be summed up in three words: What. The. Fudge.

  • tickyul

    Very sad…..the most beautiful state in the union (IMHO) is being destroyed.
    Liberals score home-run after home-run………where is the win for conservatives, will conservatives EVER win again??????????

    • Ella

      Many conservatives left for AZ, Utah, Idaho, MT and TX. A few remain in small towns and upstate areas.

      • tickyul

        AZ is FULL of illegals, Texico will be BLUE in 8-10 years, Idaho is going the same way as Colorado………must I continue??????????

        • Ella

          No, it is depressing enough to witness the browning. I see it everyday in our State. Whites will be islands within majority nonwhite communities. The young will either conform or leave. What choice will they really have?

    • WR_the_realist

      “Is being destroyed”? I think you mean “has been destroyed”. California passed the tipping point long ago. It is no longer part of the United States. The majority of state legislators support illegal immigration. Mexico has won.

      • tickyul

        YUPPPP……dats rite, yew rite!
        Mestizos and Urban Americans will be running more and more of the country……a nightmare scenario.

    • emiledurk16

      Know what you mean; that’s why the Yeagley article was so uplifting.

      • tickyul

        A done-for country…..I advise formulating an exit plan!

  • willbest

    Seems like one of the cheaper people to deport because in order to maintain your law license you have to keep your primary residence and place of business on file. Just send a car around.

  • JohnEngelman

    What part of the word “illegal” does the California Supreme Court not understand?

    • MBlanc46

      They only understand the bit that says that it’s illegal for whites to refuse to hire, rent their house to, or refuse restaurant service to diversity.

    • Steven

      I must respectfully point out that in our Judeo-Christian society, the child is not culpable for the sins of the father. If the parents broke the law to bring him here, that does not make him a criminal. Additionally, if the man can find work, pay his taxes, and help support a social security recipient, what is the issue?

  • IstvanIN

    The non-western world must laugh at us. What treasonous, suicidal fools our leaders are.

  • libertarian1234

    “Calif. Grants Law License to Undocumented Immigrant”

    I can guarantee that no such favoritism would have been shown to an individual if he were a white person here illegally from Eastern Europe.

    The feds would have insisted on deporting him, just as they do to decent, educated whites who would upgrade the skills needed here, but are deported because they’re Caucasians.

    Third world hordes are their favorite immigrants. For them all that is necessary is to be non-white to receive preferential treatment.

  • John R

    I’ll admit it: No. I didn’t even read the article. I think it will be a bunch of PC crap. What turned me off was the very phrase “undocumented immigrant”! ARRGGHH!!! Whatever happened to “illegal alien”? I guess burglars are “uninvited guests” and rapists are “assertive dominate sexual partners” and murder is “hastening death”? I mean, I knew liberals were demented, but do they really believe that the rest of us are THAT stupid? Like we don’t see what they are trying to do?

  • Ella

    And yes, all we need is another lawyer! The government deliberately creates these difficult problems by avoiding their border duties and then, screams how unfair our laws exist on the books toward illegals. If he was Dutch, the CA courts would say,”Being an illegal return to Holland promptly and practice law there in your own home country.”

  • Ella

    I really think most Americans never read our Constitution dealing with the British cruelties and injustices. It is like a replay.

  • KhanBoi77

    It is only a matter of time before illegal alien lawyers are allowed to become district attorneys and randomly charge Whites with ‘hate crimes’

    Due to this story I am never travelling to California again, too dangerous (as if the gangs and the ‘knock out game’ were not enough already!)