NC in limbo: Licenses for undocumented immigrants? - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

NC in limbo: Licenses for undocumented immigrants?

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The immigration policy President Obama signed earlier this Summer is creating a lot of questions here in North Carolina.

One of the biggest questions centers around driver's licenses and whether immigrants allowed to stay in the U.S. under deferred action should be able to get one.

Last month, a spokesperson with the Department of Transportation told WBTV, immigrants in the program qualified for a driver's license with the new paperwork. 

Under President Obama's new deferred action program,some illegal immigrants under age 30 who were brought to the U.S. as children, could quality for a 2-year work permit.

But whether or not they qualify for a driver's license, is up to each state.

And it seems the NCDOT spoke too soon. 

Officials now say applicants must show legal presence to qualify for a driver's license.

The state is not certain the work permit and paperwork provided under the new program qualifies as proof of legal presence.  

The state is seeking further guidance from U.S. Customs and Immigration.

"We're waiting until we get word from customs, and then we will confer with the Attorney General. If it meets the North Carolina requirements, we will comply with the statute, " said Mike Robertson, Commissioner for the NCDMV.

Robertson said the state has not had to issue the licenses yet because applicants are still going through the deferred action process.

He says the state will not issue the licenses until a response is received.

 

 

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