What To Know if You're Arrested for a DWI in Texas
The penalties and how to fight a conviction in TexasBy Lindsay Kramer | Last updated on January 19, 2023
Use these links to jump to different sections:driving while intoxicated (DWI), first of all, don’t panic. This doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be convicted. There are ways to fight a DWI charge, and yours might just be dismissed. Even if you gave a breath test or blood test that indicated you were over the limit, DWI attorney Deandra M. Grant says you may still be able to challenge the DWI conviction. “You can look at the warrant and that everything was done properly. We have a lot of issues with our labs here, so it doesn’t mean it’s an accurate number. We sometimes have blood retested at a different lab. We have a lot of police officers who get in trouble and may not be sponsored as witnesses. There are a lot of things to look at in a DWI case other than what happened.” The legal blood alcohol concentration limit for Texas drivers is 0.08 percent. Individuals impaired by other substances, such as illegal and prescription drugs, can also be arrested for DWI. Generally, law enforcement officers pull over any vehicles that appear to be swerving in and out of lanes, ignoring posted traffic signs, and failing to maintain their speed. An officer may then ask a driver to complete a field sobriety test to demonstrate their impairment, along with a Breathalyzer test.
Know Your RightsYou have the right to work with an experienced DWI defense attorney to fight your drunk driving charge. After you are arrested, contact an experienced DWI lawyer as soon as possible to start working on your legal defense strategy. Possible defenses to a DWI charge include:
- You were not read your Miranda Rights;
- You were not pulled over with probable cause;
- The Breathalyzer used to measure your BAC was miscalibrated or defective; and
- Your Breathalyzer test displayed incorrect results due to your consumption of food or medication.
Penalties for Texas DWIThe penalties you can face for a DWI conviction depend on a few factors: 1) whether this is your first offense DWI, 2) whether there was a child in your car when you were pulled over. For a first time DWI conviction, an individual faces the following penalties:
- $2,000 fine;
- Jail time of three to 180 days;
- Driver’s license suspension for up to one year; and
- An annual surcharge of $1,000 or $2,000 to retain one’s driver’s license for three years.
- A jail term of one month to one year;
- $4,000 fine;
- Driver’s license suspension for up to two years; and
- An annual surcharge of $1,000, $1,500, or $2,000 to retain one’s driver’s license for three years.
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