Calif. High Court Considers Illegal's Bid to Practice Law
Today, Usa, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Judges in several states are preparing to answer the latest question in the complex world of immigration: Can an illegal immigrant legally practice law in the country?
Illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children who later graduated from law schools in California, Florida and New York are trying to gain entry to their state bars so they can work as attorneys.
Sergio Garcia's family illegally crossed into the country from Mexico when he was 17 months old, and he went on to graduate from California State University, Chico, and Cal Northern School of Law. He took the state bar exam in July 2009 and passed it but was told that he could not join the state bar -- a standard requirement for all practicing attorneys -- because he had checked a box on his application noting that he was in the country illegally.
The California Supreme Court asked for opinions on the question and could hold oral arguments in Garcia's case before making a decision. The California State Bar told the court last month that Garcia and others like him should be allowed to be licensed, but it is awaiting guidance from the Supreme Court. …