- According to Texas Penal Code §9.31(e), you are not required to retreat before using force if ALL three of the following are true.
- You have a right to be present at the location where the force is used.
- You have not provoked the person against whom the force is used.
- You are not engaged in a criminal activity, other than a Class C misdemeanor that is a violation of a traffic law or ordinance, at the time the force is used.
- To put it simply, if you have a right to be there and you are not the “bad guy,” you have a right to defend yourself without having to retreat.
What Is the Castle Doctrine?
The Castle Doctrine, also known as the castle law or defense of habitation law, is a long-standing legal concept that protects the right of an individual to act in self-defense or in defense of another person. Under the Texas Castle Doctrine, your belief that deadly force is immediately necessary is presumed reasonable if you are inside your occupied home, occupied vehicle, or occupied place of business and someone:
- Forcefully and unlawfully enters or...
- Forcefully and unlawfully removes you or...
- Attempts to do either of these.