No. 545 H.B.
relating to military
discharge records that are recorded with or otherwise in the possession
of a governmental body.
BE IT ENACTED BY
THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF
: SECTION 1.
Subchapter C, Chapter 552, Government Code, is amended by adding Section
552.140 to read as follows:
MILITARY DISCHARGE RECORDS.
(a) This section applies only to a military veteran's Department
of Defense Form DD-214 or other military discharge record that is first
recorded with or that otherwise first comes into the possession of a
governmental body on or after
September 1, 2003
The record is confidential for the 75 years following the date it is
recorded with or otherwise first comes into the possession of a
governmental body. During that period the governmental body may permit
inspection or copying of the record or disclose information contained in
the record only in accordance with this section or in accordance with a
On request and the presentation of proper identification, the following
persons may inspect the military discharge record or obtain from the
governmental body free of charge a copy or certified copy of the record:
(1) the veteran who is the subject of the record;
(2) the legal guardian of the veteran;
(3) the spouse or a child or parent of the veteran or, if there
is no living spouse, child, or parent, the nearest living relative of
(4) the personal representative of the estate of the veteran;
(5) the person named by the veteran, or by a person described by
Subdivision (2), (3), or (4), in an appropriate power of attorney
executed in accordance with Section 490, Chapter XII, Texas Probate
(6) another governmental body.
(d) A court that orders the release of information under this
section shall limit the further disclosure of the information and the
purposes for which the information may be used.
(e) A governmental body that obtains information from the record
shall limit the governmental body's use and disclosure of the
information to the purpose for which the information was obtained.
SECTION 2. Section 192.002,
Local Government Code, is amended by adding Subsection (c) to read as
(c)(1) This subsection applies only in relation to a military
discharge record that is recorded with a county clerk under this section
before September 1, 2003. (2) The veteran who is the subject of
the record or the legal guardian of the veteran may direct, in writing,
that the county clerk destroy all copies of the record that the county
clerk makes readily available to the public for purposes of Section
191.006, such as paper copies of the record in the county courthouse or
a courthouse annex, microfilm or microfiche copies of the record in the
county courthouse or a courthouse annex, and electronic copies of the
record that are available to the public. The county clerk shall comply
with the direction within 15 business days after the date the direction
is received. The county clerk's compliance does not violate any law of
this state relating to the preservation, destruction, or alienation of
public records. The direction to destroy the copies of the record, the
county clerk's compliance, and any delay between the time the direction
is made and the time the county clerk destroys the copies may not be
used to limit or restrict the public's access to the real property
records of the county.
(3) A county clerk who receives a request under Chapter 552,
Government Code, for inspection or duplication of a military discharge
record recorded before September 1, 2003, is only required to search for
the record in places where or media in which the county clerk makes
records readily available to the public for purposes of Section 191.006,
such as paper records stored in the county courthouse or a courthouse
annex, microfilmed or microfiched records stored in the county
courthouse or a courthouse annex, and electronically stored records made
available to the public. This subdivision does not apply to a request
made by the veteran who is the subject of the military discharge record
or the legal guardian of the veteran.
This Act takes effect