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TCOLE Link Policy


For questions and concerns regarding the linking policy, email us at

Links to TCOLE

Advance permission to link to TCOLE’s website(s) is not necessary. However, be aware that TCOLE subpages may change at any time without notice. Entities and individuals linking to TCOLE must continuously verify links to our subpages. 
Entities and individuals linking to TCOLE shall not capture TCOLE pages within frames, present TCOLE content as its own, or otherwise misrepresent TCOLE content. Furthermore, they shall not misinform users about the origin or ownership of TCOLE content. Certain information on TCOLE may be trademarked, service-marked, or otherwise protected as intellectual property. Protected intellectual property must be used in accordance with state and federal laws and must reflect the proper ownership of the intellectual property. 
Any link to the TCOLE site should be a full forward link that passes the client browser to TCOLE unencumbered. The "Back" button should return the visitor to original site if the visitor wishes to back out.

Links from TCOLE

This section outlines the criteria and requirements that external websites must meet to have a link on the TCOLE website. It also details how links are accepted and removed from the TCOLE website. 
TCOLE reserves the right to link to external websites that it feels would provide a service or otherwise be of value to constituents.

Acceptance Criteria

TCOLE links to federal, state, and local governments that provide information and services that benefit Texas citizens, Texas local government, and Texas state agencies. At its discretion, TCOLE will consider link requests to non-governmental websites that contain information and/or services that further the purpose of TCOLE, including sites of TCOLE-contracted vendors, relevant technology-related associations and timely and relevant information technology publications. 
The TCOLE website is not a forum for public communication and debate. The criteria outlined in this section have been established to ensure that the TCOLE website remains a non-public forum. 
Every link request must undergo review to determine its relevance and appropriateness to the purpose of TCOLE. Links are approved for TCOLE based on the following criteria:

  1. The external website corresponds with the purpose of TCOLE
  2. The site's content is appropriate with respect to the purpose of TCOLE and the site is not a: 
    • Site that exhibits hate, bias, discrimination, pornography, libelous or otherwise defamatory content;
    • Site that advocates or promotes the use of alcohol or tobacco;
    • Site belonging to or supporting a political affiliation; or
    • Site that furthers the agenda of a political organization or candidate running for office.

TCOLE reserves the right to deny links if it determines that a website contains misleading or unsubstantiated claims, conflicts with the purpose of TCOLE, or does not meet one or more of the criteria set forth above in numbered sections or set out below in the section on Conditions for Link Maintenance on TCOLE.

Review Process

  1. Email link requests to, indicating “Link Request” in the subject line. Each link request should address how the site meets the two acceptance criteria outlined above.
  2. The link request will be reviewed against the acceptance criteria set forth above. The decision of the TCOLE General Counsel is final as to whether the requesting site may have a link from TCOLE.
  3. Approved sites must comply with the following conditions for link maintenance and may be required to enter into a written linking agreement with TCOLE.

Conditions for Link Maintenance on TCOLE

To give superior customer service to citizens and businesses accessing governmental information and services through TCOLE, we require that external websites linked from TCOLE meet the following conditions in order to maintain a link on TCOLE:

  1. The linked site must provide the user with access to an email address and/or a customer service telephone number so that users may contact the site if there are problems with format, accuracy, timeliness, or payment processing.
  2. Linked sites should not excessively burden the TCOLE customer support system. If the site excessively burdens the TCOLE customer support system, TCOLE has discretion to take linked site off of the TCOLE website.
  3. When the user clicks on the external website link, he/she must have easy access back to TCOLE. One of two options can accomplish this: 
    • A link to TCOLE can be established on the external website's main page; or
    • The "Back" button returns the user to TCOLE.
  4. Linked sites must have a privacy and security policy accessible from their home page informing the user of what information is collected, how it is collected, and how it is used. TCOLE encourages linked sites to comply with industry-accepted accessibility standards to ensure that persons with disabilities may access these sites.
  5. Linked sites must notify TCOLE at the email address provided below if the site to which TCOLE links become inaccurate or inactive.

Removal Process

TCOLE reserves the right to remove links if it determines that a website contains misleading or unsubstantiated claims, conflicts with the purpose of TCOLE, or does not meet one or more of the criteria set forth above in the Acceptance Criteria section or set out above in the Conditions for Link Maintenance on TCOLE section. 
Links from TCOLE will be reviewed regularly and may be removed for the following reasons:

  • The link no longer points to the original information or resource to which it was intended to point;
  • The website pointed to by the link contains inaccurate or misleading information or has changed such that it is no longer in compliance with the acceptance criteria;
  • The website pointed to by the link violates the conditions for link maintenance;
  • Access to the information has become difficult due to non-standard formatting, lengthy download times, or intrusive advertising;
  • The link is permanently unreachable or remains unavailable for a lengthy period; and
  • The external website fails to comply with the written linking agreement, if any.

The decision of the TCOLE General Counsel is final as to whether a link is to be removed from TCOLE.