Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product: Texas Penal Code §32.50

Texas Criminal Law

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The Texas Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product law gives police the right to arrest you if they believe you sold, prepared, advertised, or offered a term paper, thesis, dissertation, essay, report, recording, work of art, or other academic work product to someone when you should knew that person would use it to satisfy an academic requirement.

The law also prohibits making or disseminating a statement that you will prepare have someone else prepare any of those academic products to be sold for use in satisfying an academic requirement.

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The Texas legislature codified this criminal offense in Texas Penal Code Section 32.50. The legislature did not update this law in 2023. In fact, this law has not been amended since 1999.

The Penal Code codifies the Texas Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product law under Title 7 “Offenses Against Property,” Chapter 32 “Fraud.” Learn more about the Texas offense of Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product below.

What is the current Texas law about Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product?

The current Texas law defines the offense of Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product in Penal Code Section §32.50 as follows:[1]

(b) A person commits an offense if, with intent to make a profit, the person prepares, sells, offers or advertises for sale, or delivers to another person an academic product when the person knows, or should reasonably have known, that a person intends to submit or use the academic product to satisfy an academic requirement of a person other than the person who prepared the product.

The second category is a subsection (c) offense:

(c) A person commits an offense if, with intent to induce another person to enter into an agreement or obligation to obtain or have prepared an academic product, the person knowingly makes or disseminates a written or oral statement that the person will prepare or cause to be prepared an academic product to be sold for use in satisfying an academic requirement of a person other than the person who prepared the product.

What is an academic product?

The statute defines an “academic product” as a “term paper, thesis, dissertation, essay, report, recording, work of art, or other written, recorded, pictorial, or artistic product or material submitted or intended to be submitted by a person to satisfy an academic requirement of the person.”[2]

How can I be charged with a Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product offense in Texas?

You can be charged with Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product in Texas if the state’s attorneys believe that each of the elements of either 32.50(c) or (d) as described in the section above have been met.

What is the statute of limitation for Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product in Texas?

As a misdemeanor, Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product charges have a two-year limitations period.[3]

What is the penalty for a Texas Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product offense?

A conviction for Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product in Texas is punished as a Class C misdemeanor,[4] with a maximum possible fine under Texas state law of up to $500. Learn about the differences between grades of felonies and misdemeanors here.

Can you get probation for Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product in Texas?

The Texas Code of Criminal Procedure allows both judges and juries to grant probation for Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product, and judges are also allowed to accept deferred adjudication plea deals.[5]

What level of crime is Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product in Texas?

The Penal Code classifies the punishment for Deceptive Preparation and Marketing of Academic Product as a Class C misdemeanor.

Learn more about the penalty range for this offense in the section above.


^1. Texas Penal Code §32.50. This law is current as of the 88th Legislature Regular Session.^2. Texas Penal Code §32.50(a)(1)^3. See Code of Criminal Procedure 12.02(a)^4. Texas Penal Code §32.50(g)^5. See Chapter 42, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, Art. 42A.054, Art. 42A.056, Art. 42A.102 .

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