In Texas, juvenile records are generally sealed to protect the privacy of minors who have been involved in the justice system. This means that these records are not available to the public or to most employers, and the information contained in them cannot be used against the individual in most circumstances. This is similar to an expungement of an adult record.
Even though records should be sealed does not mean your juvenile is always protected. If you or your child are facing criminal allegations in the Austin area, you need to consult with a criminal defense attorney immediately.
Under Texas law, juvenile records are automatically restricted in most cases. This means that in most cases, individuals who were involved in the juvenile justice system will not have to worry about their records following them into adulthood.
There can be exceptions to this rule. Juvenile records can be accessed by law enforcement and some government agencies in certain circumstances. For example, if a minor is arrested for a subsequent offense, their juvenile record may be used to determine the appropriate punishment.
In addition, certain employers, such as those in law enforcement or the military, may be able to access juvenile records as part of a background check. However, this access is generally limited to cases where the individual has been convicted of a crime that is a felony if committed by an adult.
Overall, the sealing of juvenile records in Texas is intended to protect the privacy and future opportunities of minors who have been involved in the justice system. While there are some exceptions to this rule, the general practice is to keep these records confidential and out of the public eye.
It is important for individuals who have faced juvenile charges to stay aware of their rights and to take steps to protect their privacy and future opportunities. Never wait to seek legal help when necessary.
To qualify for record sealing, a juvenile must meet the following requirements:
What happens if you do not meet the qualifications for automatic sealing of juvenile records in Texas? If you were adjudicated for a felony or do not meet the necessary criteria, you have the option to apply to the court for record sealing. The court may order your records to be sealed either with or without a hearing. However, the court cannot reject the application without first listening to your attorney’s arguments. It is highly recommended to seek the right legal representation for this process.
Although Texas state law mandates automatic sealing of juvenile records for those who qualify, errors and delays may occur. Some counties may have a backlog of cases, resulting in slow sealing processing times. Moreover, cases that include felony adjudications are not eligible for automatic sealing, and you must submit an application to request a seal. It is prudent to consult with an attorney and request the juvenile court to
Juvenile charges in Texas can range from relatively minor offenses to more serious crimes. The most common allegations against minors should qualify for automatic sealing.
Some of the most common juvenile charges in Texas include:
Juvenile charges in Texas are not the same as adult charges, and the penalties for these charges may seem less severe. However, it is still important for minors to take any charges seriously and to seek the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help them navigate the justice system.
The Law Office of David D. White, PLLC represents defendants of all ages in the Austin area. Contact us for help right away.