Law Office of George B. Dombart
Attorney at Law

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Attorneys at Law
(210) 271-7372 Office
Law Office of George B. Dombart (210) 281-1394 DWI, Drug and Criminal Defense Attorney


www.GeorgeDombart.com


Penalties for DWI in Texas

The penalties for Driving While Intoxicated in Texas vary depending on a number of factors, including whether the Defendant has had a prior DWI conviction in this or another state, and the circumstances of the particular offense. When facing DWI penalties, you do not want inexperienced counsel guessing what needs to be done next.

The following is a list of the statutory penalties prescribed by the legislature.*

 

FIRST OFFENSE, NO OPEN CONTAINER, NO CHILDREN IN THE VEHICLE, NO INJURY ACCIDENT: Class B Misdemeanor

  • 72 hours mandatory jail; a longer term of confinement, up to 30 days, may be imposed as a term of probation
  • Up to 180 days in jail, plus
  • $0 to $2,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs;

OR

  • Community supervision (probation) of up to 2 years; probation requires regular in-person reporting, including probation fees of $25 to $60 per month, plus
  • $0 to $2,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs
  • Alcohol education class—approximately $135
  • Alcohol evaluation and counseling, including AA or other programs if determined by probation officer to be necessary
  • Ignition interlock: $44.95 + tax per month; for duration ordered by the court
  • Community service, minimum 24 hours, may be up to 100 hours
  • Regular or random drug and alcohol testing for the length of probation; conditions of DWI probation prevent you from ingesting any alcohol for the entire term of probation
  • Permission is usually necessary to travel outside the county during the term of probation

Administrative penalties may include:

  • Suspension of your driver's license for 90 to 365 days
  • If you have a commercial driver's license it will be revoked for 1 year if your blood alcohol content is .04 or more while driving a commercial vehicle or more than .08 driving a non-commercial vehicle; if hauling hazardous materials at arrest the suspension will be three years
  • Driver's license reinstatement fee of $125
  • Supervisory fees of $1000.00 per year for three years to keep your license after the suspension period if blood alcohol content (BAC) was under .20; $2000 per year if your BAC exceeded .20
  • Loss of your license if under 21 (zero tolerance)

Other consequences of a conviction may include: cancelled insurance, inability to get insurance, or very high rates; termination of employment if you drive for a living; background checks will turn up this conviction, and may greatly decrease your ability to change jobs particularly, in the future; some professions may look upon a conviction for driving while intoxicated unfavorably (or may in the future); lost time from work for probation office visits and community service.

 

FIRST OFFENSE, OPEN CONTAINER, NO CHILDREN IN THE VEHICLE, NO INJURY ACCIDENT: Class B Misdemeanor

In addition to all of the above penalties, the law requires a minimum jail term of six days if the Defendant had an open container of alcohol in his or her immediate possession at the time of the arrest.

 

FIRST OFFENSE, CHILD UNDER 15 IN VEHICLE, NO INJURY ACCIDENT: State Jail Felony

  • 180 days to two years in a State Jail Facility plus
  • $0 - $10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs;

OR

  • 2 to 10 years probation plus
  • $0 - 10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs
  • Up to 90 days in county jail as a condition of probation
  • Probation supervisory fees of $25.00 to $60.00 per month
  • 120 to 400 hours community service
  • Alcohol evaluation and treatment, including 90 days to one year inpatient treatment at a substance abuse treatment facility, at the defendant's expense
  • Alcohol education class
  • Ignition interlock for the full term of probation: $44.95 + tax per month

Administrative penalties may include:

  • Suspension of your driver's license for 90 to 365 days
  • If you have a commercial driver's license it will be revoked for 1 year if your blood alcohol content is .04 or more while driving a commercial vehicle or more than .08 driving a non-commercial vehicle; if hauling hazardous materials at arrest the suspension will be three years
  • Driver's license reinstatement fee of $125
  • Supervisory fees of $1000.00 per year for three years to keep your license after the suspension period if blood alcohol content (BAC) was under .20; $2000 per year if your BAC exceeded .20
  • Loss of your license if under 21 (zero tolerance)

Other consequences of a conviction may include: loss of your civil rights, including the right to vote and the right to own or possess firearms; cancelled insurance, inability to get insurance, or very high rates; termination of employment if you drive for a living; background checks will turn up this felony conviction, and may greatly decrease your ability to change jobs, particularly in the future; some professions may look upon a conviction for driving while intoxicated unfavorably (or may in the future); lost time from work for probation office visits and community service.

 

SECOND OFFENSE: Class A Misdemeanor

  • Ignition interlock at your expense as a condition of release on bond; $44.95 + tax, per month
  • 10 days mandatory jail time; a longer term of confinement (up to 30 days) may be imposed as a term of probation
  • Up to one year in jail plus
  • $0 - $4000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs;

OR

  • Community supervision (probation) of up to 2 years; probation requires regular in-person reporting, including probation fees of $25 to $60 per month
  • Alcohol education class—approximately $135
  • Mandatory ignition interlock for a period of at least one half of the term of community supervision—$44.95 + tax per month
  • Community service, minimum 80 hours, may be up to 200 hours
  • Regular or random drug and alcohol testing for the length of probation; conditions of DWI probation prevent you from ingesting any alcohol for the entire term of probation
  • Permission is usually necessary to travel outside the county during the term of probation 

Administrative penalties may include:

  • Suspension of your driver's license for 180 days to two years (CDL see the first conviction penalties)
  • Driver's license reinstatement fee of $125
  • Supervisory fees of $1500.00 per year for three years to keep your license after the suspension period ($2000 per year if BAC was greater than .20), if you have been convicted of another alcohol-related driving offense in the previous 36 months

Other consequences of a conviction may include: cancelled insurance, inability to get insurance, or very high rates; termination of employment if you drive for a living; background checks will turn up this conviction, and may greatly decrease your ability to change jobs, particularly in the future; some professions may look upon a conviction for driving while intoxicated unfavorably (or may in the future); lost time from work for probation office visits and community service.

 

THIRD OFFENSE: Third Degree Felony

  • Ignition interlock at your expense as a condition of release on bond; $44.95 + tax, per month
  • 10 days mandatory jail time; a longer term of confinement may be imposed as a term of probation
  • 2 to 10 years in prison plus
  • $0 - $10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs;

OR

  • 2 to 10 years probation plus
  • $0 - 10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs
  • Up to 180 days in county jail as a condition of probation
  • Probation supervisory fees of $25.00 to $60.00 per month
  • 160 to 600 hours community service
  • Alcohol evaluation and treatment, including 90 days to one year inpatient treatment at a substance abuse treatment facility, at the defendant's expense
  • Alcohol education class for repeat offenders
  • Ignition interlock for the full term of probation: $44.95 + tax per month

Administrative penalties may include:

  • Suspension of your driver's license for 180 days to two years
  • If you have a commercial driver's license it will be revoked for 1 year if your blood alcohol content is .04 or more while driving a commercial vehicle or more than .08 driving a non-commercial vehicle; if hauling hazardous materials at arrest the suspension will be three years
  • Driver's license reinstatement fee of $125
  • Supervisory fees of $1500.00 per year for three years to keep your license after the suspension period if blood alcohol content (BAC) was under .20; $2000 per year if your BAC exceeded .20
  • Loss of your license if under 21 (zero tolerance)

Other consequences of a conviction may include: loss of your civil rights, including the right to vote and the right to own or possess firearms; cancelled insurance, inability to get insurance, or very high rates; termination of employment if you drive for a living; background checks will turn up this felony conviction, and may greatly decrease your ability to change jobs, particularly in the future; some professions may look upon a conviction for driving while intoxicated unfavorably (or may in the future); lost time from work for probation office visits and community service.

 

FIRST OFFENSE, INJURY ACCIDENT RESULTING FROM INTOXICATION (Intoxication Assault): Third Degree Felony

  • Ignition interlock at your expense as a condition of release on bond; $44.95 + tax, per month
  • 30 days mandatory jail time; a longer term of confinement may be imposed as a term of probation
  • 2 to 10 years in prison plus
  • $0 - $10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs plus
  • Restitution to the victim;

OR

  • 2 to 10 years probation plus
  • $0 - $10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs plus
  • Restitution to the victim
  • Up to 180 days in county jail as a condition of probation
  • Probation supervisory fees of $25.00 to $60.00 per month
  • 160 to 600 hours community service
  • Alcohol evaluation and treatment, including 90 days to one year inpatient treatment at a substance abuse treatment facility, at the defendant's expense
  • Alcohol education class
  • Ignition interlock for the full term of probation: $44.95 + tax per month

Administrative penalties may include:

  • Suspension of your driver's license for 90 days to one year
  • If you have a commercial driver's license it will be revoked for 1 year if your blood alcohol content is .04 or more while driving a commercial vehicle or more than .08 driving a non-commercial vehicle; if hauling hazardous materials at arrest the suspension will be three years
  • Driver's license reinstatement fee of $125
  • Supervisory fees of $1000.00 per year for three years to keep your license after the suspension period
  • Loss of your license if under 21 (zero tolerance)

Other consequences of a conviction may include: loss of your civil rights, including the right to vote and the right to own or possess firearms; cancelled insurance, inability to get insurance, or very high rates; termination of employment if you drive for a living; background checks will turn up this felony conviction, and may greatly decrease your ability to change jobs, particularly in the future; some professions may look upon a conviction for driving while intoxicated unfavorably (or may in the future); lost time from work for probation office visits and community service.

 

FIRST OFFENSE RESULTING IN ACCIDENT CAUSING DEATH OF PASSENGER OR OTHER PERSON (Intoxication Manslaughter): Second Degree Felony

  • Ignition interlock at your expense as a condition of release on bond; $44.95 + tax, per month
  • 30 days mandatory jail time; a longer term of confinement may be imposed as a term of probation
  • 2 to 20 years in prison plus
  • $0 - $10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs plus
  • Restitution to the victim or the victim's family;

OR

  • 2 to 10 years probation plus
  • $0 - $10,000.00 fine plus
  • Court costs plus
  • Restitution to the victim
  • Up to 180 days in county jail as a condition of probation
  • Probation supervisory fees of $25.00 to $60.00 per month
  • 240 to 800 hours community service
  • Alcohol evaluation and treatment, including 90 days to one year inpatient treatment at a substance abuse treatment facility, at the defendant's expense
  • Alcohol education class
  • Ignition interlock for the full term of probation: $44.95 + tax per month

Administrative penalties may include:

  • Suspension of your driver's license for 90 days to one year
  • If you have a commercial driver's license it will be revoked for 1 year if your blood alcohol content is .04 or more while driving a commercial vehicle or more than .08 driving a non-commercial vehicle; if hauling hazardous materials at arrest the suspension will be three years
  • Drivers license reinstatement fee of $125
  • Supervisory fees of $1000.00 per year for three years to keep your license after the suspension period
  • Loss of your license if under 21 (zero tolerance)

Other consequences of a conviction may include: loss of your civil rights, including the right to vote and the right to own or possess firearms; cancelled insurance, inability to get insurance, or very high rates; termination of employment if you drive for a living; background checks will turn up this felony conviction, and may greatly decrease your ability to change jobs, particularly in the future; some professions may look upon a conviction for driving while intoxicated unfavorably (or may in the future); lost time from work for probation office visits and community service.

* All dollar numbers used in examples are approximate and subject to change. Actual results will vary depending on the court you are assigned to and the vendor you use for privately provided services, if any. The sentence and penalties stated in this article may not be accurate if you have been charged with multiple offenses.