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DWI

An arrest for driving while intoxicated (DWI) in Texas creates immediate negative consequences for the individual, and is in many ways more damaging than an arrest for other, more “serious” crimes. The criminal defense attorneys at McLemore, Reddell, Ardoin & Story, P.L.L.C. in Houston work from the moment of arrest to help people avoid the damaging consequences that can arise from a DWI conviction.

Criminal Penalties for DWI Conviction

For just a first DWI offense, you face a fine up to $2,000 if convicted, and a sentence of anywhere from 72 hours to six months in jail. Your license can also be suspended up to one year. The potential punishments increase dramatically for subsequent convictions. On a second offense, you can be fined up to $4,000 and jailed for up to a year, and your license can be suspended for two years. A third DWI is a felony offense, and penalties include fines up to $10,000 and up to ten years in prison.

Administrative Penalties for DWI Arrest

In addition to these criminal consequences, you also face an immediate 90-day driver’s license suspension from the Texas Department of Public Safety. Also, DPS will subject you to a surcharge of $1,000-$2,000 a year for three years in order to keep your license. This surcharge increases for subsequent offenses.

Other DWI Consequences

It is important to understand that DWI is a criminal offense with serious consequences and repercussions that can impact every part of your life. With a criminal record, you can lose your job or find yourself unable to get certain jobs or enter government service. You may also lose or be unable to obtain a professional license. Your right to receive government assistance can also be in jeopardy, from food stamps to student loans, and any criminal matters can be devastating to one’s immigration status. If you are going through a divorce or already subject to domestic relations orders, you may find that an arrest or conviction can negatively impact how those issues are resolved as well.

Help for DWI Arrests

You are generally not required to submit to a blood or breath test. You are never required to perform standard field tests (SFT). If you do submit to these tests, you can be arrested for DWI even if your driving was not impaired. Fortunately, a capable defense attorney can show the facts in their proper light. We are there to protect your rights. If the officer who tested you was untrained or inexperienced, if the equipment or methods used were inaccurate, or if the stop should never have occurred in the first place, we will fight to make sure you are not unfairly convicted. We can represent you at both the criminal and administrative hearings and fight for you to keep your license and keep your record clear. If you have been arrested for DWI in Houston or surrounding area, contact David Reddell at McLemore, Reddell, Ardoin & Story, P.L.L.C. for immediate assistance.