In Texas, driving while intoxicated is a serious offense. DWI charges can result in different consequences depending on the circumstances surrounding the offense.
The consequences of drinking while intoxicated
DWI, or driving while intoxicated, is the charge given when a driver has consumed enough alcohol to have at least a 0.08 blood alcohol concentration in their system. In Texas, for a first DWI conviction, you may face up to $2,000 in fines, six months’ imprisonment or both. Additionally, you may lose your driver’s license for a minimum of 90 days.
If drunk or drugged driving leads to the death or serious injury of another person, then there is a possibility that the DWI charge will get upgraded from a misdemeanor offense to a felony charge. In this case, the jail time can range between 2 and 20 years and/or a $10,000 fine.
It’s important to remember that DWI is not only a criminal offense, but it can also lead to civil penalties. If you’re convicted of DWI, you may be held liable for damages caused by your drunk driving. This could include compensation for medical expenses, property damage and even wrongful death.
How can you avoid DWI charges?
If you are planning to drink, it is best not to drive. Plan ahead and designate a driver, take public transportation or stay overnight wherever you are. If you find yourself in a situation where you have been drinking and need to drive, make sure to keep track of your drinks so that you don’t go over the 0.08 BAC limit.
It is important to remember that DWI convictions can have long-term consequences on your life, so you should try to avoid them by all means. Also, if you get charged with DWI, try to avoid getting a second DWI charge. DWIs in the state of Texas are typically considered “habitual” offenses and can result in harsher penalties than a first offense.