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The deinstitutionalization of mental health facilities in the late 1980’s has contributed to an explosion of mentally ill (MHMR) clients appearing on criminal dockets across the country. Travis County and the surrounding contiguous counties, is no exception.

Defendants with mental illness (MHMR) in Texas in both the criminal justice system and family law arenas often have special needs that can go unaddressed by court personnel. Unlike some, our office is familiar with the specialized mechanisms, procedures and laws that apply to people with a mental illness (MHMR). Let our office help you navigate and address these issues with your loved one.

Some believe that people with a MHMR diagnosis have the ability to fully control their actions. Failing to appropriately address a psychiatric disability can negatively influence the attitudes of both judges and juries toward expert witnesses and mental health defenses. We work hard on your behalf to overcome the apathy we see in the court system toward mental health issues in both criminal and family law cases.

Clients with an MHMR diagnosis in Texas are often arrested for minor offenses that directly relate to their diagnosis, their poverty, or their disturbed behavior. Charged over and over with the same petty offenses, they cycle repeatedly through the court and jail systems. Let’s work together in ending this “revolving door.” This “revolving door” is not only a burden to the courts and the criminal justice system, but it is also costly to the community (higher taxes), to those diagnosed, and to their families.

Our office understands that many attorneys quickly plead MHMR clients to “time served” without exploring his or her mental illness. In doing so, they lose the opportunity to help these clients get better so that he or she does not re-offend. Our office works hard to try and help connect mentally ill defendants to appropriate treatment or services that will help them keep out of trouble. Connections to case management services, social security disability, medicine evaluation and housing management are just a few of the services that often helps the quality of life of an MHMR client immensely.

In the family law arena the same care and concern is needed. Those diagnosed with an MHMR illness have children at the same rate as other populations. MHMR clients want the same things as the rest of us: the ability to raise happy and productive children. Our office works hard to make sure they are given that right.