How long can someone wait before filing charges?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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How long can someone wait before filing charges?

I got into a fight 4 months ago and now they are pressing charges. He came to my house and I was

walking to my car. He came at me so I hit him with my fist 3-4 times and then he left. Can they press charges if no police report was filed?

Asked on January 16, 2018 under Criminal Law, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

This would be considered a Class A assault or a Class C assault.  The statute of limitation for either one is two years.  As long as the charges are filed within that time frame, then the charge can be prosecuted.  This does not mean that the prosecutor will accept the late filing of charges, only that it's a potential.  To start the charges, the victim will have to start with the police department to file a complaint.  When a victim files charges several months later, then they do tend to be a little more hesitant at accepting the charges.  They would rather focus on charges they view as more pressing and serious for the general public safety.

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