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In this chapter:(1) "Member" means a person who submits to an online dating service provider the information required by the provider to access the provider's service for the purpose of engaging in dating or participating in a compatibility evaluation with other persons.(2) "Online dating service provider" means a person engaged in the business of offering or providing to its members access to dating or compatibility evaluations between persons through the Internet to arrange or facilitate the social introduction of two or more persons for the purpose of promoting the meeting of individuals.(3) "Texas member" means a member who provides a billing address or zip code in this state when registering with the online dating service provider.

This chapter does not apply to an Internet service provider serving as an intermediary for the transmission of electronic messages between members of an online dating service provider.

(a) For purposes of this chapter, an online dating service provider conducts a criminal background check on a person if the provider initiates a name search for the person's convictions for any:(1) felony offense;(2) offense the conviction or adjudication of which requires registration as a sex offender under Chapter 62, Code of Criminal Procedure; and(3) offense for which an affirmative finding of family violence was made under Article 42.013, Code of Criminal Procedure.(b) The name search described by Subsection (a) must be conducted by searching:(1) available and regularly updated government public record databases for criminal conviction records described by Subsections (a)(1)-(3) that in the aggregate provide substantially national coverage of those records; or(2) regularly updated databases that contain at least the same or substantially similar coverage as would be accessible through searching databases described by Subdivision (1).

(a) An online dating service provider that offers services to residents of this state and conducts a criminal background check on each member before permitting a Texas member to communicate through the provider with another member shall clearly and conspicuously disclose to all Texas members that the provider conducts a criminal background check, as described by Section 106.003, on each member before permitting a Texas member to communicate through the provider with another member.(b) An online dating service provider that offers services to residents of this state and conducts a criminal background check on each member shall include on the provider's Internet website:(1) a statement of whether the provider excludes from its online dating service all persons identified as having been convicted of:(A) a felony offense;(B) an offense the conviction or adjudication of which requires registration as a sex offender under Chapter 62, Code of Criminal Procedure; or(C) an offense for which an affirmative finding of family violence was made under Article 42.013, Code of Criminal Procedure;(2) a statement of the number of years of a member's criminal history that is included in a criminal background check; and(3) a statement that:(A) criminal background checks are not foolproof;(B) criminal background checks may give members a false sense of security;(C) criminal background checks are not a perfect safety solution;(D) criminals may circumvent even the most sophisticated search technology;(E) not all criminal records are public in all states and not all databases are up to date;(F) only publicly available convictions are included in the criminal background check; and(G) the criminal background check does not cover other types of convictions than convictions for offenses described by Section 106.003(a) or any convictions from foreign countries.(c) A disclosure required by Subsection (a) must be stated in bold, capital letters in at least 12-point type on the online dating service provider's Internet website.

Last modified 25-Jan-2016 19:49