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President's Message

The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow

“The sun’ll come out tomorrow. / Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow there’ll be sun.”


We just closed the page on another calendar year. It’s a good time for reflecting on 2014 and gazing into 2015. Hoping not to sound like those “Holiday Letters” that we get, first, let’s take a look back at this past year. (Continue reading here

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To download the TCDLA iPhone app, please visit Apple's "App Store" on your mobile device. For Android devices, go to the "Play Store." Search for "TCDLA" and download your free app. You will need your TCDLA username and password to login to the app. learn more »

Join Now!

Become a member of the largest state association for criminal defense attorneys in the nation and take advantage of member pricing on seminars, events and products. Join TCDLA »

Voice for the Defense

23 | The Prairie Dog Lawyers Advanced Criminal Law Course—Pictures and article by Chuck Lanehart

27 | DNA Just Is: A Close Look at Article 38.43—By Sarah Roland

35 | The Five Emotional Stages Your Client’s Family Will Experience When Faced With a Criminal Charge—By Joel Caldwell & Christina Caldwell

37 | A Beginner’s Guide to Free Legal Research on the Internet—By Steven Denny

Featured Events

A Taste of Voir Dire
March 5–6, 2015
Houston, TX
Register here>>

22nd Annual Mastering Scientific Evidence in DUI/DWI Cases
March 26–28, 2015
New Orleans, LA
Register here>>

DWI Defense Project
May 1, 2015
Arlington, TX
Register here>>

New Attorney Reporting Requirements

Reporting portal now live - https://tidc.tamu.edu/attorneyreporting/

HB 1318 requires both attorneys and counties beginning this October to report new information to the Texas Indigent Defense Commission regarding the caseloads of attorneys who accept public appointmentsThe information will allow policymakers to make better decisions on the best way to manage their appointment processes. It should also benefit the bar by raising awareness of the work attorneys do and help identify situations in which low pay may be creating pressures on some defense attorneys to accept more cases than they can reasonably handle. It may also help pinpoint places where the wheel system may not be working as designed and further investigation may be warranted to ensure that appointments are being made in a fair, neutral, and nondiscriminatory manner. The bill requires the following:

An attorney appointed under this article shall: … not later than October 15 of each year and on a form prescribed by the Texas Indigent Defense Commission, submit to the county information, for the preceding fiscal year, that describes the percentage of the attorney's practice time that was dedicated to work based on appointments accepted in the county under this article and Title 3, Family Code.

More information is available here. Click here for a copy of the Attorney Reporting Instructions and Form. Click here for a copy of the Optional Attorney Practice-Time Reporting Worksheet. Additional information will be forthcoming as the October implementation date approaches.