Imagine this: Your loved one is wrongfully arrested for a felony crime he did not do. He hires a criminal defense attorney to take the case to trial, yet despite his innocence, the jury finds him guilty. Your loved one appeals the case, but he’s sadly denied and sent to prison. You and your family wonder, is there anything else we can do? 

That’s when someone suggests your loved one file an “11.07” to prove his innocence and overturn his wrongful conviction. But what does that mean? What is an 11.07?

Chapter 11: Writs of Habeas Corpus in Texas

The term “11.07” refers to a chapter and section of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedures, which is a book of codes breaking down all the procedures of criminal law. It’s basically an instruction manual for how to practice criminal law in Texas. 

Chapter 11 in the Texas Code of Criminal Procedures focuses on writs of habeas corpus. There are a few different types of writs of habeas corpus, each with a different section number, but all writs of habeas corpus in criminal law focus on offering post-conviction relief, which means overturning wrongful convictions.

Often, people confuse writs of habeas corpus with appeals, but they’re actually quite different. Yes, both are procedures that try to reverse convictions, but there are important distinctions:

  • An appeal can only make arguments based on trial errors, and must be filed directly following the trial.

  • A writ of habeas corpus allows a person convicted of a crime to present new evidence that wasn’t considered at trial, such as new DNA evidence or new witness testimony. In addition, they can also argue that their original criminal defense attorney provided ineffective assistance. Finally, a writ of habeas corpus is less time sensitive than an appeal.

Who is eligible for an 11.07?

There are different types of writs of habeas corpus in criminal law, each with a different section number. Each section number delineates who can apply for the different types of writs. 

For example, a person is only eligible to file an 11.07 writ of habeas corpus if:

  • They have received a felony conviction

  • They have been sentenced to prison time (and no probation)

  • They have NOT been given the death penalty 

Other common types of writs of habeas corpus include an 11.072, which is for those who have been given probation on a misdemeanor or felony conviction or deferred adjudication, and an 11.09, which is for those who were sentenced to jail time on a misdemeanor conviction. 

No matter the specifics of your situation, if you’ve been wrongfully convicted in Texas and want to fight to overturn it, there is a writ of habeas corpus that will allow you to do so. A qualified criminal defense attorney with experience in post-conviction relief procedures can help you determine which writ is appropriate for your case. 

How 11.07 Writs of Habeas Corpus Differ Procedurally From Other Writs

Each type of writ of habeas corpus has its own rules and instructions. For instance, when a person files an 11.07 writ of habeas corpus, only the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals can grant or deny it. While the original trial court reviews the writ and makes recommendations, the decision to approve or deny ultimately lies with the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. 

This differs from other writs of habeas corpus, such as an 11.072, where the trial court has original jurisdiction. This means they have the power to approve or deny the writ.

Don’t worry if all the rules are overwhelming–an experienced Texas lawyer can guide you through the process. 

The First Step to Filing a Writ of Habeas Corpus

No matter what type of writ of habeas corpus you want to file—or if you’re not even sure which type would make sense in your situation—the first step is to reach out to an attorney in Texas who focuses their practice on post-conviction criminal defense. This is a highly technical area of law, so it’s important to invest in a lawyer who has had ample success filing appeals and writs of habeas corpus. 

An award-winning lawyer with over 15 years of experience practicing criminal law throughout Texas, Chris Perri began his career working on writs and appeals, and he’s never stopped. He’s helped people overturn wrongful convictions, and he might be able to help you, too. 

To learn more about how Chris Perri Law may be able to help you or your loved one, call (512) 269-0260 or visit to schedule a free case consultation.