Potential consequences for driving while intoxicated

The state of Texas takes drunk driving, also known as DWI, very seriously. As such, those who are accused of driving while intoxicated could face punishments that may range from a variety of fines to major jail sentences. Those who have a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or more are legally considered to be intoxicated. Furthermore, those with lower BAC levels who drive while impaired can still face charges.

The punishments for DWI become more severe based on the number of previous DWI convictions a person has. A first offense, for example, can result in three to 180 days in jail, a maximum fine of $2,000, a loss of driver's license for a maximum of a year and an annual fee of up to $2,000 for three years to keep a drivers license. Those punishments can be potentially doubled if the offender is convicted of a second DWI offense. For a third DWI offense, the person could face a maximum prison sentence of 10 years in addition to major fines.

An offender could also be charged with child endangerment if they are accused of driving while intoxicated with any passengers who are younger than 15 years of age. If convicted on this charge, the driver could face a maximum of two years in prison, maximum fine of $10,000 and loss of driving privileges for 180 days.

Being charged with a drunk driving offense in Texas can have a major impact on a person's life. In some cases, it may lead to lost employment, missed education scholarships or other similar consequences as well as legal consequences. A criminal defense and drunk driving defense attorney may fight a DWI charge by questioning the traffic stop, any roadside testing that was done and police procedures.

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