If I am served a subpoena to testify against my husband in a domestic assault case, do I have to get on stand and say anything?

UPDATED: Feb 4, 2014

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Feb 4, 2014Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I am served a subpoena to testify against my husband in a domestic assault case, do I have to get on stand and say anything?

What are my options?

Asked on February 4, 2014 under Criminal Law, Texas


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

In the American system there is a fundamental right to be heard in due process of law. This is defined in the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution. A necessary requisite of due process of law is the opportunity to be heard, in a manner which is meaningful, in front of a forum which has an open mind, and is willing to listen to evidence. Adequate notice and an opportunity to confront adverse witnesses must be afforded.

As a general rule, independent of statutory considerations, the writ of habeas corpus ad testificandum under American law may be resorted to for the purpose of removing a person confined in a jail or prison to enable him to testify as a witness. The issuance of such a writ lies within the sound discretion of the court, or the judicial officer having the power to compel the attendance of witnesses. Relevance and materiality are of consideration in such matters. The constitutional right of an accused to compulsory process for obtaining witnesses does not necessarily extend to compelling the attendance of person in prison. This right is not violated by a statute which makes the right to the production of a witness confined in prison upon the discretion of the court.

Answer: If served with a trial subponea you have to appear in court and possibly give testimony. I suggest that you consult with a criminal defense attorney in your locality about whther the marital privilege precludes your testimony. One in your community can be found on attorneypages.com.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption