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What are DWI Penalties in Texas?

  • By: Brain Ayson
  • Published: July 13, 2017

DWI penalties in Texas vary depending on whether you are being charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, whether it’s a first or a second DWI (if it is a misdemeanor), and what your blood alcohol concentration was when you were arrested.

If you are arrested for DWI and it is your first offense and your blood alcohol concentration is over .08 (the legal limit) but under .15, then you will be charged a class B misdemeanor. DWI penalties for a class B offense range from zero to 180 days in jail and up to a $2000 fine. However the range of punishment changes if your blood alcohol concentration is over .15. If your blood is over .15 then you will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. That means the range of punishment goes up to up to one year in jail and a maximum $4000 fine. A conviction on a first offense also carries the possibility of license suspension for up to one year.

If it’s a second DWI you are arrested for, you will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor (again, up to a year in jail and a $4000 fine) but you can tack on days in jail even if you get probation. That means that even if you work out a deal with the DA to do probation you still have to do a minimum 3 days as a condition of probation (and possibly more at the judge’s discretion.) If you are charged with a second DWI, your DWI penalties also include a mandatory interlock installation on your vehicle. A conviction on a second DWI means your license can be suspended for up to two years.

In addition to fines, court costs, community service, drug and alcohol education classes, and license suspension, DPS will also assess a surcharge which can run several thousand dollars once you are convicted.

If you are convicted of a third DWI it is a felony and the range of punishment goes up significantly. The range of punishment on a third DWI is two to ten years in prison and up to a $10000 fine. Your license may also be suspended up to two years.

If you are charged with the DWI, call a Houston DWI lawyer. Call the Ayson Law Firm.

Brain Ayson

About the Author I am passionate about protecting my client's rights and
love being able to help clients in their time of need.