New Mexico State Immigration Laws
Welcome to FindLaw's coverage of existing New Mexico legislation and rules related to individuals' immigration status. Below you will find information on what, if any, rules New Mexico has regarding immigration checks by law enforcement, educational institutions, and employers, as well as the existence of E-Verify requirements, restrictions on public benefits based on an individual's immigration status, and more. Remember, immigration enforcement is currently a combined effort by state and federal authorities. While this has been a controversial proposition, it still remains a part of immigration enforcement. If you or someone you love is facing a deporation action, be sure to speak with an attorney as soon as possible.
Law Enforcement and Immigration in New Mexico
State police officers required to report arrestees who are unable to prove legal residence to federal immigration authorities.
As part of the 287(g) Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) ACCESS Program, officers in the New Mexico Dept. of Corrections cooperate directly with federal authorities in the enforcement of immigration law.
Under a federal program called "Secure Communities," all arrestees are fingerprinted and run through a federal database which checks their criminal record and immigration status.
Refer to federal employment eligibility verification rules and the requirements for Form I-9.
New Mexico E-Verify Requirements
No state requirement to use E-Verify.
Driver's License/ID Requirements
Undocumented immigrants are not eligible for a state driver's license. Residents can apply for a driver's authorization card.
Foreign nationals with legal status must make an appointment (no walk-ins) to apply for a driver's license or state ID.
Public Benefits Restrictions
Under federal law, illegal immigrants are prohibited from receiving most public benefits. However, they are allowed to receive emergency services, health care and other programs that have been deemed "necessary to protect life and safety."
Voting ID Rules
No state-mandated voter ID requirement. In order to vote in New Mexico, you'll need to be:
- A resident of New Mexico
- A citizen of the United States
- Not legally declared mentally incapacitated
- Not a convicted felon, or a felon who has completed all of the terms and conditions of sentencing
- 18 years or older at the time of the next election
Housing Ordinances and Immigration
Nex Mexico Immigration Laws: Related Resources
If you want to conduct additional research after reading this article, FindLaw has made it easy for you. Simply click on the links below to learn more information.
- Immigrant Services - Overview of state services provided to immigrants (New Mexico Attorney General).
- Know Your Rights - Guide to protecting yourself and your family during immigration raids (PDF, CASA of Maryland and other organizations).
- Hiring an Immigration Lawyer
Want to Learn More About Your Rights? Call a Local Immigration Attorney
No matter where you reside in New Mexico, the immigration laws are the same throughout the state. What is important is to stay abreast of any new or revised laws, particularly when you are applying for citizenship or a green card. If you have additional questions after reading this article or need immediate relief, find a local immigration attorney today.
Contact a qualified immigration attorney to help you get the best results possible.