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Georgia driving laws target immigrants

As the Great Melting Pot, the American Dream is supposed to be available to all, not a privileged few. Unfortunately, some parts of the country can be more difficult places to carve out a piece of the pie for immigrants, despite the relatively short amount of time that the vast majority of American citizens can trace their heritage within the country's borders. Georgia is no exception — in fact, Georgia is among several states with laws that seem intended to make life and the pursuit of the American Dream for the immigrant even more difficult.

One such example of Georgia laws that unfairly target immigrants is a clearly punitive law that restricts issuing driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants. If this doesn't seem harsh, take into account that also in the state Georgia, driving without a license is an offense that can result in unfair amounts of jail time, thousands of dollars in fines and for repeat convictions, it becomes a felony offense.

Practically speaking, for immigrants who are not properly documented in Georgia, regardless of how they may be contributing to their community, just trying to operate from day to day and get around can be criminal. Even if you have no other offenses, you may be deemed a felon for driving without a license that the state refuses to give you. Rhetoric that claims to only be targeting "the bad guys," is not fair, to say the least — should any person expect to be labeled a felon and forcibly kicked out of the country for simply not having a driver's license? That seems extreme by any measure.

If you are trying to build a life for yourself as an immigrant in America, there may always be pitfalls and roadblocks, no matter where you choose to make your home. Even if you have not run up against the law, you deserve to have someone on your team to help you navigate the difficulties of immigrant life. The guidance of an experienced attorney who is committed to the American Dream for all can help you ensure your rights remain protected in a challenging legal environment.

Source: Complex, "How to Get Deported," Natasha Vargas-Cooper, Nov. 09, 2016

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