DREAM Act Lawyers
What is the DREAM Act?
The DREAM Act proposes to grant legal permanent resident status to some undocumented aliens who qualify. Its full title is the Development, Relief, and Education of Alien Minors Act. Among other provisions, the DREAM Act would allow undocumented citizens to receive education, obtain educational financial aid, work, and join the military in the U.S.
The DREAM Act has not yet been approved as law. It was originally proposed in 2001, rejected in 2010, and reintroduced to the legislature in 2011. It is still currently under debate, as many feel that the Act supports illegal immigration into the U.S.
What is the California DREAM Act?
While the federal DREAM Act is still under debate, California has already passed its own version of the DREAM Act. The California DREAM Act was signed into law in October of 2011. It is similar to the federal version, except that it focuses more on educational provisions.
For example, the California DREAM Act allows undocumented residents to apply for student financial aid. This largely focuses on the issuing of Cal Grants to students who qualify. Eligibility requirements for the California DREAM Act include:
- The student came to the U.S. without a proper visa while under age 16
- The student has attended school on a regular basis and graduated from high school
- The student has demonstrated both “merit” and “need”
- They have met requirements for GPA and in-state tuition applications
Thus, California’s DREAM Act allows persons to obtain financial assistance for education that they otherwise weren’t eligible for.
What are the Arguments Against the California DREAM Act?
Both the federal DREAM Act and the California DREAM Act have received much criticism. In particular, opponents of the California DREAM Act argue that the law will create a financial burden on the state, since it grants tuition breaks for persons who weren’t eligible before.
There is also debate as to whether the California DREAM Act will increase the amount of illegal immigration into the state. Opponents of the Act suspect that more illegal aliens will seek to relocate to California to take advantage of the law’s benefits.
On the other hand, supporters of the law argue that it will be ultimately beneficial to the state, as more residents will be educated and employable in the higher levels of the workforce.
The efforts to change or modify the law are ongoing, and there is a significant movement to have the Act repealed.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Advice on the DREAM Act?
The DREAM Act proposes major changes to immigration law and policies. If you have any questions about the Act, or about the California DREAM Act, you may wish to contact an immigration lawyer for advice. Your attorney will be able to explain how the law works, and can help represent you in court if you feel that you have been discriminated against in violation of the law.
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Last Modified: 06-11-2012 03:40 PM PDT
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