In justice courts, judges are not necessarily lawyers, and the rules of evidence may not apply. Most debt collectors have lawyers representing them; defendants in debt claim cases often do not have the benefit of a lawyer. Many Texans fall into a “justice gap” where they are not poor enough to qualify for free legal services, but also cannot afford to pay for legal services on their own. Because more and more Texans are trapped in this situation, many litigants are left arguing their cases on their own or “pro se,” without the help of a skilled advocate. Key Findings: 1: Court website information is more helpful to plaintiffs than to defendants. 2: Most courts provide plaintiffs with forms to file debt claim cases. 3: No court provided defendants with answer forms specific to debt claim cases. 4: Links to applicable rules of civil procedure are available on most, but not all court websites.
Dangerous Discipline is a report from Texas Appleseed and Texans Care for Children. Data collected from Texas school districts, municipal courts, juvenile probation departments, the Texas Education Agency, and student surveys show that students in Texas schools are arrested, are sent to adult criminal courts, referred to juvenile probation, and experience use of force incidents at alarming rates, often for relatively minor misbehaviors. These punitive discipline methods are disproportionately used against Black and Latino students and youth with disabilities even though students of color are no more likely to misbehave, and students with disabilities should be receiving supports from their schools.
The Texas Homeless Youth Handbook – created in partnership between Texas Appleseed, Baker & McKenzie and Weatherford – is a guide to help homeless youth better understand their legal rights, responsibilities and resources. Texas was the fourth state in the U.S. to have this particular resource.
Cities can make a difference for their citizens and local economies by enacting policies that constrain abuses surrounding high-cost payday and auto title loans and encouraging productive market options, such as low-cost loan products and local initiatives to promote financial well-being across neighborhoods. "A Toolkit for Cities" lays out specific opportunities any city can pursue, highlights benefits to cities and overall communities, and includes quick facts, tips, and case study examples of programs locally and across the nation. The toolkit includes details from how and why to partner with a local Council of Government (COG) to investing in low-cost lending programs to participating in an employer-based affordable loan program, plus more.
This study analyzes four years of payday and auto title loan data from the state consumer credit regulator, the Texas Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner. Other key words: credit access business, fees, refinances, unified ordinance, economy, single payment loan, installment loan, loan transactions, small-dollar loans.


Criminal Discovery
Fair Defense Act
Immigrant Banking
Immigrant Children & Families
International Remittances
Mental Health
Bail Reform & Pretrial Justice
Civil Asset Forfeiture
Coerced Debt
Debt Collection
Disaster Recovery & Fair Housing
Education Justice
Fines & Fees
Foster Care & Courts
Homeless Youth
Juvenile Justice
Payday & Auto Title Lending Reform
Protecting Seniors from Financial Abuse
Amicus briefs