Texas DWI Charges: The Basics

DWI

Texas DWI Charges: The Basics

If you or your child has been pulled over for drunk driving, you are not alone. Tens of thousands of people face the same charge every year in Texas, and it is always a difficult situation. If you are facing a DWI charge, your case has its own unique set of circumstances, but there are some basic facts that apply to all cases and that are useful to know.

Blood Limits in the State of Texas

Alcohol in your system is measured in terms of blood alcohol concentration (BAC). In Texas, the BAC limits are as follows:

  • For drivers who are over the age of 21 (and who are not commercial drivers, such as truck drivers), the BAC limit is 0.08 percent.

  • For commercial drivers, the BAC limit is 0.04 percent.

  • For drivers who are under the age of 21, it is illegal to drink in the first place, and it is, therefore, illegal for them to present with any detectable amount of alcohol behind the wheel.

Consequences for Minors

Because it is illegal for minors to drink alcohol, the law takes a dim view of those who drink and drive. As such, the consequences for minors caught while impaired behind the wheel can include any or all of the following:

  • Suspension of one’s driver’s license for up to one year

  • Up to $500 in fines

  • Participation in an Alcohol Education Program

  • Community service

  • An ignition interlock requirement

Consequences for Adults

The State of Texas takes a strict stance against drunk driving, and as such, implements very harsh consequences for adults who are convicted of DWI, including any or all of the following:

  • Suspension of one’s driver’s license for up to two years

  • Up to $2,000 in fines

  • Up to 180 days in jail

  • Completion of an Alcohol Education Program

  • Community service

  • An ignition interlock requirement

If the conviction is not your first and/or there are aggravating circumstances involved, you will face steeper fines and penalties.

Refusing to Submit to a Breathalyzer Is a Complicated Matter

When you obtain a driver's license in Texas, you also consent to give a breath or blood sample in the event that you are ever arrested for DWI. This is what is known as the implied consent law, but it is important to point out that this consent applies only if you have been arrested for DWI. In other words, you can refuse to submit to a breathalyzer prior to being arrested. While you can refuse to be tested after an arrest, you will face harsh mandatory penalties for doing so. Further, in some instances, the police are permitted to bypass your refusal and obtain a sample without your consent anyway.

Reach Out to an Experienced Killeen Criminal Defense Lawyer Today

If you are facing a DWI charge, you need Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, in your corner. Mr. Pritchard is a dedicated criminal defense lawyer who is uniquely qualified and well prepared to help guide your case toward an optimal resolution. To learn more, please do not wait to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 today.
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