:   |   |   |  
| Email Alerts | New! Mobile Apps

State Supreme Court rules in Garcia's favor

Set Text Size SmallSet Text Size MediumSet Text Size LargeSet Text Size X-Large
Updated: 1/02 5:27 pm
By Nick Dobis, News Web/Social Media Producer

The California Supreme Court has granted Sergio Garcia, an undocumented immigrant from Chico, admission to the State Bar allowing him to legally practice law in the state, according to the court’s website.

The court’s decision was unanimous and was authored by Chief Justice Tani-Cantil Sakauya.

According to the court’s website, the decision was based in part on a new statute passed by the State Legislature in September 2013 and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown in October 2013. The statute authorizes the court to admit State Bar applicants not lawfully present in the country and who have fulfilled the requirements to practice law. The statute became effective yesterday.

Read the statute: Business and Professions Code section 6064, subdivision (b)

Garcia was born in Mexico in 1977 and arrived in the United States illegally when he was 17 months old. After graduating from High School Garcia attended Butte College, the California State University, Chico, and the Cal Northern School of Law where he received his law degree in May 2009. Garcia passed the state bar exam in 2009 where on his application he stated he was not a legal U.S. citizen and that his citizenship status was still "pending". 

After conducting an investigation into Garcia's background, the Committee of Bar Examiners submitted Garcia's name to the State Supreme Court for admission to the State Bar. In response the court ordered the committee to show cause to why the motion should be granted. The court heard arguments on the case on September 4, 2013 which focused on Garcia's case in relation to relevant federal statute. Two days later, the previously mentioned statute was earmarked into an unrelated bill in the State Legislature. 

The court explained that in light of the new legislation enacted January 1, it did not need to determine whether an undocumented immigrant was ineligible to obtain a law license by virtue of United States civil code.

However, the court stated on their website they did not fully resolve the legal concerns surrounding this case because the court still needs to determine “whether there is any reason why undocumented immigrants, in general, should not be admitted to the State Bar, or whether there is any reason, specific to Garcia himself, that he should not be admitted to the State Bar.”

Despite this lingering concern, the court eventually ruled in favor of Garcia because there isn’t a state law or policy denying illegal immigrants the opportunity to obtain admission into the state bar and because of Garcia's law qualifications and moral character.  

1 Comment(s)
Comments: Show | Hide

Here are the most recent story comments.View All

The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of Action News Now

nonarocks59 - 1/2/2014 10:02 PM
0 Votes
Has the State Supreme Court lost it's collective mind? He's been here all this time and yet not managed to apply for citizenship but wants all the benefits I seem to have to have citizenship and proper ID for? I don't think so! He's not so virtuous, not even getting a work permit or visa or even trying to follow the rules by the time he can get through law school? Or was it all a big game to him to try and press it since the "new law" that allows this was piggybacked upon another bill unrelated? How does the legislature get away with THAT SNEAKY CRAP? And the Supreme Court backs him.. well I'll just remember that next time I commit a crime and tell them well I don't need to follow the rules, illegal immigrants don't have to.. and manage to get benefits and schooling and everything else , actual citizens, have to show, to go to school or work? How is it an illegal immigrant doesn't have to show this proof to go to school? To work? Doesn't matter where you're here illegally from either. If I have to follow the rules, he should too. How does he drive? Try to get something from DMV without proper ID. How does that work, you mark illegal and you don't have to show proof? All the proof you have to show for County or State aid, how do they do it? Just mark illegal and no proof required? How?
Action News Headlines
Weather Center & Blog
Feels Like:

Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.

Mobile advertising for this site is available on Local Ad Buy.

© 2014 GOCOM Media of Northern California