What Happens When You Get a DWI in Texas?

Texas DWI

The severity of driving while intoxicated charge in Texas relies largely on your blood alcohol content (BAC) and the situation at the time of the arrest. If found driving in Texas, anybody whose blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08 percent or more would be charged with DWI. Depending on the size of the individual, drinking just one or two alcoholic beverages may result in a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent. The driver’s license will be suspended for 180 days if they refuse to take a blood or breath test at the scene.

DWI, however, does not solely relate to consuming alcohol. A DWI may also come from drug-related impairment brought on by prescription or illicit drug usage. If illicit narcotics are present, the driver may also be charged with further offenses.

Texas DWI Penalties

If a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is.08 or greater or if they have been using drugs or another restricted substance, they are said to be legally drunk in Texas. Normal class “B” misdemeanor charges for a first-offense DWI have a three-day minimum jail term. When a DWI causes significant bodily harm or when a drunk driver operated a vehicle while operating a kid under the age of 15, felony charges may be brought. First-time DWI offenders are not automatically obliged to install an ignition interlock device (IID), but repeat offenders are required to do so.

Penalties for a DWI are severe, even if this is your first offense. For a first offense, you may face:

  • Fines of up to $2,000
  • A minimum of three and up to 180 days in jail
  • Up to a one-year loss of driver’s license
  • Three-year fees of $1,000 to $2,000 annually to regain a driver’s license.

A mandated alcohol education program and community service requirements are typically part of a first-time DWI conviction. It could be possible to get an occupational license during the time when you lose your driver’s license, allowing you to drive to and from work or school. Ignition interlock devices are often needed on every vehicle the driver owns or runs if the court issues an occupational license.

The penalties for the second, third, and subsequent infractions get worse. There are circumstances that result in harsher punishments, even for a first offense. For instance, you can also be charged with endangering a child if there were passengers in the car under the age of 15 when you were stopped. These sanctions consist of:

  • Fines of up to $10,000
  • Up to 24 months in jail
  • Six-month loss of driver’s license.

In addition to the DWI, additional circumstances like speeding or driving while your license is suspended or revoked may also have an impact on your punishment. A prison term is more likely if the DWI led to death or serious harm to another person. There might be an extra $500 in fines if there was an open container of alcohol in the car when it was stopped.

Do I get to keep my driver’s license?

Driving is a privilege, not a right, and offenses like DWI may result in its suspension. You have around 15 days from the time of your arrest for a first-offense DWI to ask for a hearing to challenge a license suspension. If you meet the requirements to keep your license, you could have to pay a $1000 annual extra for three years. Depending on how serious your infraction was, this cost may reach $2000. Our law office can offer you the legal aid and guidance you need to help you keep your driving privileges.

Class B vs. Class A Misdemeanor

A first offense Under Texas law, DWI is often regarded as a Class B misdemeanor. However, the infraction is a Class A misdemeanor if the driver’s blood alcohol content is greater than 0.15 percent. The latter might lead to greater fines and lengthier prison terms.

What to do if you get a DWI in Texas

With a DWI, the risks are significant. You need the assistance of a seasoned Texas DWI attorney if you or a loved one was accused of DWI in the Houston Texas area.

It is essential to get legal representation right once when a DWI is involved. We can assist you with dealing with any outstanding warrants in Harris, Fort Bend, or Montgomery counties, as well as with DWI record sealing, sealing your DWI from possible employers or background checks, and providing proactive and experienced defense services.

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