September 22, 2013
Admitting applicants to practice law in California is one of the Supreme Court’s many tasks. In the vast majority of cases, the court admits without fuss those applicants certified by the State Bar’s examining committee. Two notable exceptions are In re Garcia and In re Glass, concerning the potential bar memberships of an undocumented immigrant and a disgraced former journalist, respectively.
The outcomes of Mr. Garcia’s and Mr. Glass’s cases will impact more than those two applicants, however. The Supreme Court has put on hold at least three other admissions, waiting for decisions in the Garcia and Glass matters. Two applications are being “held in abeyance” for a decision in Mr. Garcia’s case and, in another, briefing is deferred pending decision in Mr. Glass’s case.
We can see why Mr. Garcia’s application could affect others. Presumably, the two applicants on hold are also undocumented immigrants who otherwise meet all the requirements for a law license. The hold for Mr. Glass’s case, however, is harder to understand because Mr. Glass’s circumstances seem unique.