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Attor­ney Gen­er­al Opinions

An attorney general opinion is a written interpretation of existing law. Attorney general opinions cannot create new provisions in the law or correct unintended, undesirable effects of the law. Attorney general opinions do not necessarily reflect the attorney general's personal views, nor does the attorney general in any way "rule" on what the law should say. Furthermore, attorney general opinions cannot resolve factual disputes.

Who Can Request an Attorney General Opinion?

Only those requestors authorized by law may seek the Attorney General's written advice through a formal opinion.

The Government Code lists the officials authorized to request formal attorney general opinions. The attorney general is prohibited by statute from giving a written opinion to anyone other than an authorized requestor.

Authorized requestors include:

  • the governor
  • the head of a department of state government
  • the head or board of a penal institution
  • the head or board of an eleemosynary institution
  • the head of a state board
  • a regent or trustee of a state educational institution
  • a committee of a house of the Texas Legislature
  • a county auditor authorized by law
  • the chairman of the governing board of a river authority
  • a district or county attorney

A person other than an authorized requestor who would like to request an attorney general opinion may ask an authorized requestor to submit the question to the attorney general. The authorized requestor has the discretion to decide whether to ask for an attorney general opinion in any given instance.

How do I Request an Attorney General Opinion?

If the law authorizes you to request an attorney general opinion, you may send a request letter in writing in one of two ways:

  1. Email: [email protected]
  2. Certified or registered mail, with return receipt requested:
    Office of the Attorney General
    Attention Opinion Committee
    P.O. Box 12548
    Austin, Texas 78711-2548

No specific formatting requirements exist to submit a request, but it should include any relevant background information and known legal authorities significant to the subject matter.

Who Can Submit a Brief?

The Attorney General accepts briefing on pending opinion requests from any governmental entity, organization, or person, including members of the general public.  Briefing should be submitted by Email to  [email protected].  All briefing and materials submitted are subject to the Public Information Act.

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