Depending on the circumstances of your DWI offense, you may qualify for DWI Probation in Houston.
First offenders are frequently given this type of probation, as long as their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was not greater than 0.15 percent.
However, even individuals convicted of second and subsequent DWI offenses may be granted probation in certain situations.
There are, however, multiple factors involved in determining whether or not you qualify for DWI Probation in Houston.
If you have been charged with a drunk driving offense, it is in your best interest to contact a Houston DWI lawyer as soon as possible.
The legal team at the Law Office of Andrew J. Williams can help you determine how to proceed.
Houston DWI Probation Explained
DWI Probation is similar to other types of probation in that the person who is convicted of DWI is placed under community supervision in lieu of jail time.
Certain DWI offenses require minimum jail sentences, however. As such, these minimum sentences will need to first be served before probation can begin.
If this is your first DWI offense, you may be granted probation without serving any jail time.
If, however, this is your second offense and the first offense occurred more than five years ago, Texas imposes a minimum sentence of 72 hours in jail.
This does not disqualify you from probation, but you will be required to first serve the 72 hours.
If this is your second DWI offense and the previous offense(s) occurred within five years, Texas imposes a minimum sentence of five days in jail.
If this is your third or subsequent offense, you will first have to serve no less than 10 days behind bars before probation can commence.
How Long Does DWI Probation in Houston Last?
Although probation is generally less damaging to your life and reputation than jail time, it can still be a major inconvenience.
Depending on the particulars of your case, probation can last anywhere from six months to two years for a first offense with no aggravating circumstances, or up to six years for subsequent DWIs or when other factors are involved.
Further, failing to adhere to any of the strict requirements of probation can lead to a probation violation, which can in turn result in additional fines, jail time, or extended probation.
A violation can be something as simple as missing a monthly meeting with your probation officer.
As such, it is in your best interest to follow all requirements without exception.
What Do I Have to Do on DWI Probation in Houston?
Although conditions of probation vary from person to person based on multiple factors, the most common requirements include:
Random Drug Testing
While on probation, you must remain drug and alcohol-free.
In order to ensure your compliance, you will be required to submit to random drug and alcohol testing throughout the duration of your probation.
Most DWI offenders will need to complete between 24 and 100 hours of community service as a condition of their probation.
Fines and Court Costs
In addition to fines of up to $2,000, you will likely also have to pay court costs and supervision fees.
Courts costs are usually between three and four hundred dollars, and supervision fees are commonly $60 per month.
Attend Required Meetings
If you are placed on DWI probation, you will need to attend various meetings as a condition of your probation.
Missing any of these meetings may result in a violation.
- M.A.D.D.: DWI offenders must attend M.A.D.D.’s three-hour Victim Impact Panel as a condition of probation.
- DWI class: In most cases, you will be required to attend two, four-hour DWI classes. Although the judge may waive the class requirement in certain cases, it is nearly always a condition of probation.
- Meet with probation officer: You will need to meet with your probation officer at least monthly.
In addition to the conditions and required meetings listed above, you must avoid committing any other offenses while on probation.
You may also be required to have an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in your vehicle.
Failure to follow any of these requirements could land you behind bars.
Contact the Law Office of Andrew J. Williams Today
If you have been charged with or convicted of DWI in Texas, the skilled legal team at the Law Office of Andrew J. Williams can help.
Our knowledgeable, experienced lawyers know how to position you for the most favorable outcome possible, and we will ensure that you understand your rights and options before moving forward.
Contact the Law Office of Andrew J. Williams today at 281-358-9111 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.