Why you should call a Houston traffic lawyer after a DWI
January 25, 2022at5:00 AM
You’ve just received a DWI. Your future ability to drive is in question. But an experienced Houston traffic lawyer may be able to help.
There’s no doubt that a DWI charge carries some serious consequences. A license suspension is certainly a severe one, but it’s hardly the end of the potential penalties you could face. Fines, jail time, and more are all on the table if you’re found to be driving while impaired.
Aside from driving sober in the first place, your best defense is to know what exactly leads to a DWI charge, how it differs from a DUI, and what’s expected from you in order to reinstate your license. Learn more about all of that in this blog post.
What happens when you get a DWI in Texas?
A blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% counts as legal intoxication in Texas. If you’re charged with a DWI, regardless of how many prior offenses you’ve had, you may potentially receive a fine for thousands of dollars, jail time, and a license suspension.
These penalties, of course, become more severe as your number of repeat offenses grows. Your first offense may result in a maximum fine of $2,000, a jail sentence of 180 days, and a one-year driver’s license suspension. Your second offense brings these numbers up to $4,000, one year in jail, and a two-year suspension. If you’re charged with a DWI a third time, you’ll pay $10,000, spend up to 10 years in prison, and lose your license for up to two years.
With a child under 15 years of age in the car, these penalties become even more severe, adding another $10,000, two years of jail time, and a 180-day suspension on top of any other consequences. These additional penalties are added regardless of your number of offenses.
What’s the difference between a DUI and a DWI?
A DWI is a more severe charge. Generally, a DUI (short for “driving under the influence”) relates mainly to alcohol and is based on blood alcohol content. A DWI, on the other hand, can be a drug-related charge.
How can you reinstate your driver’s license?
If you’ve been convicted of a DUI or DWI charge, you can take steps to reinstate your license from the moment of your conviction.
Drivers generally have the ability to appeal these decisions when they believe a legal error has been made. Additionally, you can request a hearing with the Texas Department of Public Safety to contest the revocation of your license. You’ll have to request it within 20 days of the decision. Once this timeframe has passed, you’ll be automatically denied and the suspension will remain in effect.
It’s possible, however, to get your license reinstated after 10 years even in the case of a permanent suspension. It’s not a guarantee, and you’ll be required to complete a program approved by the Texas DPS to be eligible.
Work with Monks Law Firm to get back on the road
Your best bet to quickly get your license reinstated in the event of a DWI charge is to retain the services of a skilled Houston traffic lawyer immediately. You’ll find a team of them at Monks Law Firm.
As we’ve written before on our blog, having an attorney on your side can help you avoid accidentally incriminating yourself, build a strong case for yourself, navigate fees and compliance items, and take advantage of temporary opportunities like an occupational license for necessary travel. It’s your best bet for making sure you’re on the road when you need to be and taking every possible step to legally defend yourself.