Mar 7
9:46 AM

“Dreamers” Who Dream of Being Lawyers More Welcome in California Than in Florida

The Supreme Court of Florida has issued an advisory opinion, requested by the Florida Board of Bar Examiners, explaining that in order for unauthorized or undocumented immigrants to be admitted to the Florida Bar, Florida will have to follow a legislative path like the one adopted by California.

The federal Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 bars unauthorized immigrants from receiving state public benefits, including professional licenses, unless the state enacts a law “which affirmatively provides for such eligibility.” Accordingly, last year, the California legislature passed Business and Professions Code 6064(b) providing for admission of qualified unauthorized immigrants to the California Bar.

The Florida opinion sates that “[i]f the Florida Legislature were to take steps similar to those taken in California, and affirmatively provide that such unauthorized immigrants are eligible for professional licenses, or, more narrowly, a license to practice law, [applicant] and other similarly situated qualified individuals would be eligible for admission to The Florida Bar pursuant to our current rules.”


Leave a Reply