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Texas Health and Safety Code - HEALTH & SAFETY § 81.165. Probable Cause Hearing

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(a) A hearing must be held to determine if:

(1) there is probable cause to believe that a person under a protective custody order presents a substantial risk of serious harm to himself or others to the extent that the person cannot be at liberty pending the hearing on a court order for the management of a person with a communicable disease;  and

(2) the health authority or department has stated its opinion and the detailed basis for its opinion that the person is infected with or is reasonably suspected of being infected with a communicable disease that presents an immediate threat to public health.

(b) The hearing must be held not later than 72 hours after the time that the person was detained under the protective custody order.  If the period ends on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the hearing must be held on the next day that is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday.  The judge or magistrate may postpone the hearing for an additional 24 hours if the judge or magistrate declares that an extreme emergency exists because of extremely hazardous weather conditions that threaten the safety of the person or another essential party to the hearing.  If the area in which the person is found, or the area where the hearing will be held, is under a public health disaster, the judge or magistrate may postpone the hearing until the period of disaster is ended.

(c) A magistrate or a master appointed by the presiding judge shall conduct the hearing.  The master is entitled to reasonable compensation.

(d) The person and his attorney shall have an opportunity at the hearing to appear and present evidence to challenge the allegation that the person presents a substantial risk of serious harm to himself or others.  If the health authority advises the court that the person must remain in isolation or quarantine and that exposure to the judge, jurors, or the public would jeopardize the health and safety of those persons and the public health, a magistrate or a master may order that a person entitled to a hearing for a protective custody order may not appear in person and may appear only by teleconference or another means the magistrate or master finds appropriate to allow the person to speak, to interact with witnesses, and to confer with the person's attorney.

(e) The magistrate or master may consider evidence that may not be admissible or sufficient in a subsequent commitment hearing, including letters, affidavits, and other material.

(f) The state may prove its case on the health authority's or department's affidavit of medical evaluation filed in support of the initial motion.

Cite this article: - Texas Health and Safety Code - HEALTH & SAFETY § 81.165. Probable Cause Hearing - last updated April 14, 2021 |

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