Chapter 58. Records; Juvenile Justice Information System

Subchapter C. Automatic Restriction of Access to Records § 58.201. DEFINITION.

In this subchapter, "department" means the Department of Public Safety of the State of Texas.

§ 58.202. EXEMPTED RECORDS.

The following records are exempt from this subchapter:

(1) sex offender registration records maintained by the department or a local law enforcement agency under Chapter 62, Code of Criminal Procedure; and

(2) records relating to a criminal combination or criminal street gang maintained by the department or a local law enforcement agency under Chapter 61, Code of Criminal Procedure.

§ 58.203. CERTIFICATION.

(a) The department shall certify to the juvenile probation department to which a referral was made that resulted in information being submitted to the juvenile justice information system that the records relating to a person's juvenile case are subject to automatic restriction of access if:

(1) the person is at least 21 years of age;

(2) the juvenile case did not include violent or habitual felony conduct resulting in proceedings in the juvenile court under Section 53.045;

(3) the juvenile case was not certified for trial in criminal court under Section 54.02; and

(4) the department has not received a report in its criminal history system that the person was granted deferred adjudication for or convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor punishable by confinement in jail for an offense committed after the person became 17 years of age.

(b) If the department's records relate to a juvenile court with multicounty jurisdiction, the department shall issue the certification described by Subsection (a) to each juvenile probation department that serves the court. On receipt of the certification, each juvenile probation department shall determine whether it received the referral and, if it received the referral, take the restrictive action notification required by law.

(c) The department may issue the certification described by Subsection (a) by electronic means, including by electronic mail.

§ 58.204. RESTRICTED ACCESS ON CERTIFICATION.

(a) On certification of records in a case under Section 58.203, the department, except as provided by Subsection (b):

(1) may not disclose the existence of the records or any information from the records in response to an inquiry from:

(A) a law enforcement agency;
(B) a criminal or juvenile justice agency;
(C) a governmental or other agency given access to information under Chapter 411, Government Code; or
(D) any other person, agency, organization, or entity; and (2) shall respond to a request for information about the records by stating that the records do not exist.

(b) On certification of records in a case under Section 58.203, the department may permit access to the information in the juvenile justice information system relating to the case of an individual only:

(1) by a criminal justice agency for a criminal justice purpose, as those terms are defined by Section 411.082, Government Code; or

(2) for research purposes, by the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, the Texas Youth Commission, or the Criminal Justice Policy Council.

§ 58.205. REQUEST TO THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION ON CERTIFICATION.

On certification of records in a case under Section 58.203, the department shall request the Federal Bureau of Investigation to:

(1) place the information in its files on restricted status, with access only by a criminal justice agency for a criminal justice purpose, as those terms are defined by Section 411.082, Government Code; or (2) if the action described in Subdivision (1) is not feasible, delete all information in its database concerning the case.

§ 58.206. EFFECT OF CERTIFICATION IN RELATION TO THE PROTECTED PERSON.

(a) On certification of records in a case under Section 58.203:

(1) the person who is the subject of the records is not required to state in any proceeding, except as otherwise authorized by law in a criminal proceeding in which the person is testifying as a defendant, or in any application for employment, licensing, or other public or private benefit that the person has been a respondent in a case under this title and may not be punished, by perjury prosecution or otherwise, for denying:

(A) the existence of the records; or
(B) the person's participation in a juvenile proceeding related to the records; and

(2) information from the records may not be admitted against the person who is the subject of the records in a civil or criminal proceeding except a proceeding in which a juvenile adjudication was admitted under:

(A) Section 12.42, Penal Code;
(B) Article 37.07, Code of Criminal Procedure; or
(C) as otherwise authorized by criminal procedural law.

(b) A person who is the subject of records certified under this subchapter may not waive the restricted status of the records or the consequences of the restricted status.

§ 58.207. JUVENILE COURT ORDERS ON CERTIFICATION.

(a) On certification of records in a case under Section 58.203, the juvenile court shall order:

(1) that the following records relating to the case may be accessed only as provided by Section 58.204(b):

(A) if the respondent was committed to the Texas Youth Commission, records maintained by the commission;
(B) records maintained by the juvenile probation department;
(C) records maintained by the clerk of the court;
(D) records maintained by the prosecutor's office; and
(E) records maintained by a law enforcement agency; and

(2) the juvenile probation department to make a reasonable effort to notify the person who is the subject of records for which access has been restricted of the action restricting access and the legal significance of the action for the person, but only if the person has requested the notification in writing and has provided the juvenile probation department with a current address.

(b) On receipt of an order under Subsection (a)(1), the agency maintaining the records:

(1) may allow access only as provided by Section 58.204(b); and

(2) shall respond to a request for information about the records by stating that the records do not exist.

§ 58.208. INFORMATION TO CHILD ON DISCHARGE.

On the final discharge of a child from the juvenile system or on the last official action in the case, if there is no adjudication, the appropriate juvenile justice official shall provide to the child:

(1) a written explanation of how automatic restricted access under this subchapter works;

(2) a copy of this subchapter; and

(3) a statement that if the child wishes to receive notification of an action restricting access to the child's records under Section 58.207(a), the child must before the child's 21st birthday provide the juvenile probation department with a current address where the child can receive notification.

§ 58.209. INFORMATION TO CHILD BY PROBATION OFFICER OR TEXAS YOUTH COMMISSION.

(a) When a child is placed on probation for an offense that may be eligible for automatic restricted access at age 21 or when a child is received by the Texas Youth Commission on an indeterminate commitment, a probation officer or an official at the Texas Youth Commission reception center, as soon as practicable, shall explain the substance of the following information to the child:

(1) if the child was adjudicated as having committed delinquent conduct for a felony or jailable misdemeanor, that the child probably has a juvenile record with the department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation;

(2) that the child's juvenile record is a permanent record that is not destroyed or erased unless the record is eligible for sealing and the child or the child's family hires a lawyer and files a petition in court to have the record sealed;

(3) that the child's juvenile record, other than treatment records made confidential by law, can be accessed by police, sheriff's officers, prosecutors, probation officers, correctional officers, and other criminal and juvenile justice officials in this state and elsewhere;

(4) that the child's juvenile record, other than treatment records made confidential by law, can be accessed by employers, educational institutions, licensing agencies, and other organizations when the child applies for employment or educational programs;

(5) if the child's juvenile record is placed on restricted access when the child becomes 21 years of age, that access will be denied to employers, educational institutions, and others except for criminal justice agencies;

(6) that to have the child's juvenile record placed on restricted access at age 21, the child must not:

(A) commit a felony or jailable misdemeanor; and
(B) receive deferred adjudication for or be convicted in adult court of a felony or jailable misdemeanor; and

(7) that restricted access does not require any action by the child or the child's family, including the filing of a petition or hiring of a lawyer, but occurs automatically at age 21 if the child does not commit a criminal offense in the future.

(b) The probation officer or Texas Youth Commission official shall:

(1) give the child a written copy of the explanation provided; and

(2) communicate the same information to at least one of the child's parents or, if none can be found, to the child's guardian or custodian.

(c) The Texas Juvenile Probation Commission and the Texas Youth Commission shall adopt rules to implement this section and to facilitate the effective explanation of the information required to be communicated by this section.

§ 58.210. SEALING OR DESTRUCTION OF RECORDS NOT AFFECTED.

(a) This subchapter does not prevent or restrict the sealing or destruction of juvenile records as authorized by law.

(b) Restricted access provided under this subchapter is in addition to sealing or destruction of juvenile records.

(c) A person who is the subject of records certified under this subchapter is entitled to access to the records for the purpose of preparing and presenting a motion to seal or destroy the records.

§ 58.211. RESCINDING RESTRICTED ACCESS.

(a) If the department has notified a juvenile probation department that a record has been placed on restricted access and the department later receives information in the department's criminal history system that the subject of the records has been convicted of or placed on deferred adjudication for a felony or a misdemeanor punishable by confinement in jail for an offense committed after the person reached the age of 17, the person's juvenile records are no longer subject to restricted access. The department shall notify the appropriate local juvenile probation departments in the manner described by Section 58.203 that the person's records are no longer subject to restricted access.

(b) On receipt of the notification described by Subsection (a), the juvenile probation department shall notify the agencies that maintain the person's juvenile records under Section 58.207(b) that the person's records are no longer subject to restricted access.