Third Court of Appeals
In-Person Hearings Resume
The Third Court of Appeals will resume in-person oral arguments beginning September 2021.
The Court recognizes the need to ensure the health and safety of litigants, attorneys, court staff, judges, and other individuals entering the Third Court of Appeals. Accordingly, the Court has adopted Courtroom Protocols for in-person arguments. (Courtroom Protocols)
Please note, per the Courtroom Protocols, that the number of individuals allowed in the courtroom is greatly reduced. If an individual is not directly participating in the court proceedings, it is strongly encouraged that they observe the proceedings by the Court’s YouTube channel.
The public may access live proceedings via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHh91c6f79r2EAmlBH4T63g?view_as=subscriber. Additionally, following the hearing, an audio recording of the proceeding will be posted to the Court’s website at http://www.txcourts.gov/3rdcoa/oral-arguments/.
The Office of Court Administration, in consultation with the Texas Access to Justice Commission has created a self-help resources internet website for pro se parties. Self-Help Resources
Challenge to Constitutionality of a State Statute
Pursuant to Section 402.010 (a-1) of the Texas Government Code, any party challenging the constitutionality of a Texas Statute must file a “Challenge to the Constitutionality of a State Statute” form with the court in which the challenge is pending. This form can be accessed on the Court’s website at http://www.txcourts.gov/3rdcoa/practice-before-the-court/forms/.
Oral Arguments are Recorded and Available on the Court's Website
Effective January 1, 2018, audio recordings will be made of this Court’s oral arguments and provided to the public on the Court’s website subject to further orders of the Court. All references to persons or details that could identify a minor should be disguised to protect the minor’s identity. Any objections to making or posting the recording of an oral argument should be made in writing for the Court’s consideration. For more information regarding oral argument in the Third Court of Appeals, see this Court’s Practice before the Court items 60 – 68.
New Attorney Portal Allows Access to Appellate Records
Updated May 22, 2017: The Attorney Portal web site URL has changed; you should no longer use "www."
Attorneys practicing before the Third Court of Appeals now have a Portal that provides secure online access for attorneys of record to view case documents which may not be available on the Court’s website. For example, the clerk’s and reporter’s record are not available on the Court’s website, but will now be available via the Attorney Portal to attorneys of record. The records are available for 60 months from the date the records are filed with the Court. Sealed records and non-pdf files are not available through the Attorney Portal, and separate arrangements with the Court will need to be made in order to access these documents.
Appellate records often contain sensitive information. Any attorney who obtains copies of appellate records must respect the sensitive nature of this information. By registering to use the Attorney Portal, you agree NOT to publish, share, or otherwise post downloaded documents to any public websites.
Attorneys can register for access to the Attorney Portal at attorneyportal.txcourts.gov/account/register/. You will need your bar member number and the email address currently on file with the Third Court of Appeals in order to register.
The State Bar of Texas Appellate Section Pro Bono Program
The goal of this program is to match clients who cannot afford legal representation with volunteer Texas lawyers who agree to serve without expectation of compensation. For more information about the Third Court of Appeals in Austin Pro Bono Program please visit the State Bar of Texas Appellate Section website at http://www.tex-app.org/DrawOnePage.aspx?PageID=84.
Pro Se Litigant Guide Published
The Texas Young Lawyers Association has published a pro se litigant guide. This link is provided as a resource for those litigants that may represent themselves on appeal. Pro Se Litigant Guide.
Local Rule Regarding Frivolous Appeals in Criminal Cases Approved
Effective September 15, 2014, the Court requires counsel to demonstrate compliance with pre-withdrawal requirements by filing a completed Certificate of Counsel. To download a copy of the certification, please refer to the Forms link under General Information. In addition, attorneys may download a sample cover letter to send to appellant to assist in fulfilling counsel's obligation pursuant to Anders. The new Local Rules also addresses the content of an Anders Brief.
Effective January 1, 2014, all attorneys in civil and criminal cases are required to eFile all documents (except a document submitted under seal or subject to a motion to seal) with the Court through the eFileTexas.gov electronic filing system. Persons not represented by an attorney may eFile documents, but eFiling is not required. (See Final eFiling Rules) For further instructions, please refer to the Electronic Filing link under General Information.
Court Implements Electronic Noticing
Effective August 1, 2013, the Third Court of Appeals has implemented a new email notification system. All notices and other communications sent from the Court will be delivered via email in lieu of mailing paper notices. All documents filed with the Third Court of Appeals, whether filed electronically or by paper, must include the filer's email address in addition to any other information required by the Texas Rules of Appellate Procedure. If the filer's email address changes, the filer must provide the clerk and, if applicable, eFileTexas.gov and the e-filer's EFSP with the new email address within one business day of the change. In addition, Lead Counsel must continue to register for CaseMail and follow the instructions for receiving notices for each case in which they represent a party. Please note, CaseMail is independent from the email notification system described above.