X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
OPINION

The Texas Department of Public Safety (“DPS”) appeals an order of expunction granted to James Patrick Steele. DPS filed an answer, but failed to appear at the hearing, which was not recorded. No other law enforcement agency answered or appeared. DPS filed a motion for new trial that was overruled by operation of law. DPS timely requested findings of fact and conclusions of law, and duly reminded the trial court, but no findings of fact and conclusions of law were filed. On appeal, the issue presented for review states, “Whether it is an abuse of discretion for a court to grant a petition for expunction when it was apparent from the record that the petitioner made a judicial admission in the petition for expunction that a plea of nolo contendre (sic) to a class B misdemeanor was made by the petitioner on the criminal charge that the petition was seeking to expunge.” The appellee did not file a brief.

An agency’s appeal of an expunction order proceeds in the same manner as in other civil cases. Tex. Crim. Proc. Code Ann. art. 55.02 � 3(a) (Vernon Supp. 2001). Although the motion for new trial identified a meritorious defense to the petition for expunction, DPS did not allege that its failure to file an answer or appear was not intentional or the result of conscious indifference. See Craddock v. Sunshine Bus Lines, 134 Tex. 388, 133 S.W.2d 124, 126 (Tex.1939). A post-answer default constitutes neither an abandonment of the defendant’s answer nor an implied confession of the issues placed in controversy by the general denial. Stoner v. Thompson, 578 S.W.2d 679, 682 (Tex. 1979). Judgment cannot be entered on the pleadings, but the plaintiff must produce evidence proving his case. Id.

 
Reprints & Licensing
Mentioned in a Law.com story?

License our industry-leading legal content to extend your thought leadership and build your brand.

More From ALM

Premium Subscription

With this subscription you will receive unlimited access to high quality, online, on-demand premium content from well-respected faculty in the legal industry. This is perfect for attorneys licensed in multiple jurisdictions or for attorneys that have fulfilled their CLE requirement but need to access resourceful information for their practice areas.
View Now

Team Accounts

Our Team Account subscription service is for legal teams of four or more attorneys. Each attorney is granted unlimited access to high quality, on-demand premium content from well-respected faculty in the legal industry along with administrative access to easily manage CLE for the entire team.
View Now

Bundle Subscriptions

Gain access to some of the most knowledgeable and experienced attorneys with our 2 bundle options! Our Compliance bundles are curated by CLE Counselors and include current legal topics and challenges within the industry. Our second option allows you to build your bundle and strategically select the content that pertains to your needs. Both options are priced the same.
View Now

Pennsylvania Legal Awards 2021

June 24, 2021
Virtual

The Legal Intelligencer honors lawyers leaving a mark on the legal community in Pennsylvania with their dedication to law.


Register

Legalweek Leaders in Tech Awards 2021

July 16, 2021
Virtual

Recognizing innovation in the legal technology sector for working on precedent-setting, game-changing projects and initiatives.


Register

GlobeSt. Women of Influence Awards 2021

July 22, 2021
Park City, UT

GlobeSt. Women of Influence Conference celebrates the women who drive the commercial real estate industry forward.


Register

Attorney

Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, United States

Boutique suburban Philadelphia area based Personal Injury firm seeks a very motivated associate with a minimum of 5 years practice experienc...


Apply Now ›

Corporate Associate

New York, New York, United States

Duane Morris LLP has an opening for a mid-level corporate associate in its New York office. Join an exciting and growing M&A practice in...


Apply Now ›

Paralegal

New York, New York, United States

Lax & Neville LLP, a boutique law firm specializing in securities arbitration/litigation, financial services regulatory defense, financi...


Apply Now ›

MARTIN CLEARWATER & BELL, LLP

06/15/2021
NYLJ Web

MARTIN, CLEARWATER & BELL LLP COUNSELORS AT LAW IN MEMORY OF FRANCIS PETER BENSEL


View Announcement ›

GILL & CHAMAS

06/14/2021
NJLJ Web

GILL & CHAMAS Congratulations to our partner and friend,DAVID H. LANDE, ESQ on his appointment to Judge in the Division of Workers Compensation.


View Announcement ›

MANDELBAUM SALSBURG PC

06/07/2021
NJLJ Web

Please to announce that....


View Announcement ›