The Texas Legislature directed TIDC to contract with six public law schools in Texas to operate innocence projects:
At each innocence project, law students work under the direction of attorneys to review actual innocence claims. TIDC provides $100,000 in funding per clinic per year.
Texas law schools' approaches to innocence claims varies. Three funded law schools directly employ supervising attorneys, while two contract with the Innocence Project of Texas, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, to implement innocence programs. At each school, law school students earn credit through a clinical program or externship that provides real-world experience working on criminal cases.
TIDC funding is used to defray the costs of the projects' supervising attorneys. The innocence projects normally seek additional funds for litigation expenses, investigation, forensic testing, and expert consultation.
In addition to the six programs funded in part by TIDC, several other innocence programs operate in Texas. Visit the Innocence Network to learn more.
Note: TIDC does not provide direct representation or legal advice.
TIDC-funded innocence projects have developed a standard questionnaire. You can access that form here or find it in the Texas Offender Legal Handbook:
TIDC's Grant Team can help.