If you operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher, you could be charged with DWI. In addition, you can be charged if your
physical or mental capacities are impaired by drugs or alcohol. Shocking to some people is that you can be arrested for DWI without being under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If you think this is unfair, it is. Our Austin DWI lawyer works diligently to uncover what led to your arrest and how to build a defense. You could be facing steep consequences if convicted. Speak to the Law Office of David D. White, PLLC.
Facing a DWI is already a complex experience. However, some factors with your DWI can lead to additional charges. Some of these separate charges include:
Our Austin DWI lawyer can advise you on the potential penalties and defenses for these charges. We will try to get you the most favorable
Often the prosecution will hinge their entire case on your blood alcohol content test results. Knowing how the tests were administered can be critical to your defense. Challenging their validity can lead to the test results being dismissed. While you might know that the legal BAC is up to .08%, different categories might impact your case. In short, they include:
When determining your penalties, the court may consider your results and how they fit into these categories. We could also use that in your defense if you were on the lower end. Speak to an Austin DWI lawyer.
Your license can be suspended if you are arrested for a DWI in Austin.
The Administrative License Revocation Program handles this process,
not the criminal court system. The program administrators can suspend your license regardless of the result of your criminal case. Upon arrest, the officer will confiscate your license, and you will be issued a
The suspension will vary. You can face a suspension 40 days after the date of your arrest. You can also face a suspension 90 days later if you undergo a breath or blood test. If the officer gets a warrant for your blood, you could face a license suspension within 180 days. When you refuse or fail any testing, you will receive a notice in the mail. You will then have 15 days to take action.
You can request a DWI driver’s license hearing. If you do not request a hearing, your license will automatically be suspended for the applicable period. The hearing takes place at the State Office of Administrative Hearings. Remember, it is independent of your criminal case. During the hearing, the state must prove that you were driving and had alcohol in your system.
If you provide officers with a chemical sample, they will be admitted at the hearing. Conversely, if you admitted to drinking but did not have any tests, those statements will also be provided in court. While you have 15 days to request the hearing, it can take up to 120 days to be scheduled. The steps of the hearing process will be as follows:
Department of Public Safety provides an arrest report to the judge
The police report is admitted into evidence
You can present evidence to fight the suspension
The judge will review the case and issue a ruling
You should work with an Austin DWI lawyer to prepare for the hearing and ensure you are fighting back as best as possible. A license suspension can result in other consequences. You might be unable to go to work or school or complete daily activities. Do not let a license suspension wreak havoc on your life.
If your license is suspended, you have the option to keep driving. You can apply for an Occupational Driver’s License (ODL). While it can allow you to drive again, various restrictions and requirements exist. The application requirements include:
Most drivers are unfamiliar with what an SR-22 is. Essentially it is an insurance required to obtain an Occupational Driver’s License. Even if you currently have auto insurance, you must still get an SR-22. You can work with your insurer to provide this documentation. The form states that you have minimum liability insurance. Insurance providers often inform DPS if you cancel or end your insurance. They will also tell them of any lapses.
Often you will not go back to jail after your initial arrest. But that will depend on individual circumstances. Suppose it is a first-time offense, and someone was injured or there was a minor in the car. You can face additional penalties, including jail time. Before you begin planning time in jail, there are other consequences you can suffer. Some of those penalties include:
Your BAC level will also impact the consequences you face. If your BAC is under .15%, fines can be up to $2,000, and jail between three and 180 days. When your BAC is over .15%, penalties increase to $6,000, and jail sentences can last three days to one year. Your Austin DWI lawyer can fight for alternative sentencing during a first-time DWI offense.
This program is on a case-by-case basis. You can be required to have a year of alcohol monitoring and counseling. You must also abstain from using drugs or alcohol. You must also maintain a clear criminal record when enrolled in this program. Community service of 25 hours may also be part of this program. If you follow these requirements, your charges may be dismissed. If you fail to complete even one task, the charges are reinstated.
Depending on your circumstances, your best option might be to negotiate with the state. You must have an Austin DWI lawyer with experience handling this process. Ideally, the state will replace your current charge with a lower one. Texas is unique in that it cannot amend or reduce charges. They can only withdraw and replace them. This is often seen in cases where there are no prior arrests and the defendant had a low BAC during the arrest.
“When you hire me, you get me. Not my admin, not my associates. I’ll meet, talk, text, and work with you directly to get you the best possible outcome in your case.”
David D. White
Criminal Defense Lawyer
A subsequent DWI conviction can have steeper penalties. Texas does not have a specific period, so the DWI is still relevant no matter how long ago the arrest was. They will also count arrests and convictions in other states. Second offenses are often considered misdemeanors with a maximum of 12 days in jail. If the first offense did not have an injury or a high BAC, you might have the potential to avoid jail time.
If you are unsuccessful in avoiding jail time, there is a mandatory sentence of three days. You will also face a license suspension and the following penalties:
These penalties are similar to a first offense. However, every case is unique, and your penalties can include all or several of the ones on this list. Discussing the potential consequences with your DWI lawyer in Austin is best.
First and second DWI offenses are typically misdemeanors with the potential for a felony. A third DWI conviction is automatically a felony. It carries up to ten years in jail. If you can walk away without extended jail time, you may be left with a shorter sentence, usually around ten days. If our Austin DWI lawyer can negotiate for a reduced jail sentence, you may still face probation and other consequences.
There are some alternatives to jail time that you can fight for. You must have a DWI attorney in Austin working with the prosecutor and judges to secure these alternatives. They might not be the most conventional solution, but they will keep you out of jail. Some alternatives include:
Some of these are consequences for first and second offenses. But when you face jail time, they can be alternatives to keep you out. It will all come down to your circumstances and your Austin DWI lawyer.
When facing a criminal charge like a DWI, you should not be alone. Instead of accepting a plea or excessive penalties, get legal assistance.
A criminal conviction can impact the rest of your life. Do not allow a misunderstanding to alter the course of your life. Instead, speak to our
Austin DWI lawyer. We can put your mind at ease while we fight for you. Call the Law Office of David D. White, PLLC, at 512-881-7227 or use our contact page to schedule an initial consultation.
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