Are You Undocumented? 4 Rights You Might Not Know You Have

If you came into the United States illegally, meaning your presence here is undocumented, you still have certain rights. Those rights are yours whether you know about them or not. If your status is undocumented, it's important that you familiarize yourself with the rights that you have. Knowing your rights can protect you from being treated unfairly. Here are four rights that you may not know you have.

Limited Constitutional Rights

The United States has a constitution that provides its citizens certain rights. If you're an undocumented immigrant, you are protected by some of those rights. For instance, the 14th Amendment to the constitution provides all persons the right to due process under the law. It also provides all people equal protection under the law. By virtue of being in the United States – with or without proper documentation – you have those rights.

Right to Defend Against Deportation

If you've been arrested and threatened with deportation, you have the right to fight those deportation orders. While you're fighting to stay in the country, you also have the right to obtain legal counsel. An immigration lawyer will be able to help you through the process. If you're being threatened with deportation, you need to find an immigration lawyer as soon as possible.

Driving Rights

If you want to drive a car in the United States, you need to have a valid driver's license. Some states now allow undocumented immigrants the right to obtain a valid license. Some of those states include California, Nevada and Utah. It's important to note that a valid driver's license does not give you legal rights or citizenship status. To find out if your state issues driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants, you should contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles, or an immigration attorney in your area.

Certain Employment Right

If you're an undocumented immigrant, you don't have the legal right to work in the United States. However, you do have the right to be treated fairly. That means that employers cannot discriminate against you because of your nationality. For instance, if an employer asks for proof of your legal authorization to work in the United States, that must be a question that they ask all applicants. They can't just ask for proof of legal status based on your nationality.

If you're in the United States as an undocumented immigrant, you are protected by certain rights. To help you understand your rights, you should speak to an immigration lawyer as soon as possible. This is particularly true if you feel you are in danger of deportation, or you are seeking to citizenship. For more information, contact Fickey Martinez Law Firm, P.L.L.C. or a similar organization.