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Burden of Proof in Parole Revocation Hearings

Preparing a Texas Parole Packet

Once someone has made parole and left prison to continue their life they are obligated to follow the “terms and conditions” to which they agreed and signed in their paperwork.

These terms and conditions can and do include avoiding alcohol, taking periodic drug test to prove they are not using drugs, reporting regularly and at the times assigned by their parole officer, and many other rules.

Many people are under the impression that the state must prove any allegations as to violation of their terms and conditions “beyond a reasonable doubt”, just as it is with a separate criminal charge.

However, courts have determined that since being granted parole is a “privilege” as opposed to a “right” then the burden of proof is only by a preponderance of the evidence, the same as in a civil case. A simple way to think of this is the judge just has to find that the state proved the allegations were violated “more likely than not”.

In plain terms, it is much, much easier for the state to prove a violation than it is to prove an initial crime and the parolee is not entitled to request a jury.

The importance of abiding by the terms and conditions of parole are emphasized in our book How to Prepare a Texas Parole Package and it is highly recommended for the preparation of a  parole package, both accumulating items as well as understanding what will help or hurt, the chances for making parole.

How to Prepare a Texas Parole Packet is available in ebook format as an instant download or in bundled form with an ebook and a printed book to be sent to an offender in prison or someone at home. Since we are an approved vendor there are no issues receiving our books at any of the Texas jails or prisons.

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