Will You Go to Jail for a DUI in Texas?

If you are pulled over by the police in Texas under suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you may go to jail. Your sentence, or even whether or not you will be convicted, may depend on many different factors.

Texas is unique in that is it among a few other states which differentiate between driving under the influence (DUI) and driving while intoxicated (DWI). DUI is a Class C misdemeanor reserved only for drivers under 21 years-old suspected of having any detectable amount of alcohol in their system. In Texas, minors are “detained” and not formally placed under arrest and are instead held until released to their parent’s custody.

The penalties for DUI include immediate license suspension until their hearing and a fine of up to $500. Minors convicted of DUI may have their license suspended

However, arresting officers may still choose to charge any driver, regardless of age, with the serious charge of DWI. Like most states, Texas has been taking a harder stance on drinking and driving and checkpoint enforcement. If you were charged with DWI in Texas, you will need a DWI lawyer to help avoid jail time.

Texas DWI laws

We all deserve to drive on safe highways, and Texas law is tough on offenders. In Texas, a driver is considered legally intoxicated if either he or she has a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or are otherwise impaired by alcohol or drugs. If you are pulled over by police in Texas and have a BAC over the legal limit or officers may take you into custody and charge you with DWI.

Penalties for DWI in Texas

If convicted of DWI in a Texas court, offenders may face between three to 180 days in jail. Convicted drivers may also incur fines of up to $2,000 and additional annual fees between $1000 to $2,000 in order to retain their driver’s license. All of this can be just for a first offense.

Subsequent DWI arrests may result in even steeper penalties, if convicted. After a second DWI conviction, drivers may face between one month and one year in jail, a fine up to $4,000, license suspension of up to two years, and have to pay $2,000 a year for three years to retain their license.

In the event of a third DWI conviction, drivers may spend two to 10 years in prison, pay a fine of up to $10,000, have their license suspended another two years, and need to pay fines of up to $2,000 a year for three years to keep their license.

Texas also has special penalties for drivers convicted of DWI with minor children in a vehicle. Penalties for child endangerment in Texas are jail time of up to two years, a $10,000 fine, and driver’s license suspension of up to 180 days.

Texas DUI lawyers

If you or a loved one face the charge of DUI or DWI, retaining an experienced attorney can help protect your legal rights. The attorneys of The Law Office of Andrew J. Williams work tirelessly with their clients to help litigate DWI and DUI charges.

Questioning the honesty state’s witnesses, validating the authenticity of toxicology reports, and examining whether proper procedure were followed in your DUI arrest may be crucial to winning your case. Our attorneys have the experience and resources necessary to properly defend your case. Contact The Law Offices of Andrew J. Williams for a consultation about your case.

Andrew Williams, an experienced attorney who can challenge evidence in a DWI case
About the Author: Andrew Williams
I am a criminal defense lawyer with over 20 years experience defending people accused of wrongdoing. I am board certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Only ten percent of attorneys in Texas are board certified in their respective field. I practice criminal law exclusively in both state and federal court including appeals of criminal cases.