In Allen, a boating while intoxicated (BWI) charge carries the same penalties as a DWI. You face substantial fines, potential jail time, and the loss of your driver’s license. You will also have a permanent criminal record upon conviction.
A Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) lawyer in Allen can help. The Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg offers a complimentary consultation and case review. Call 214-696-9253 to learn more.
Penalties for Allen Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) Charges
In Texas, operating a watercraft while intoxicated subjects you to serious criminal charges. The statutes define intoxication as having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or above, although the police can arrest you without BAC testing if an officer believes you lack the physical or mental capacity to safely operate a boat.
The statutes define watercraft as essentially any vessel besides a canoe or kayak, including:
- Jet skis
- Water skis
With only a few minor exceptions, BWI charges are identical to DWI charges. Two notable exceptions are:
- The police do not need reasonable suspicion to board your boat as they would to pull your car over.
- Passengers on your boat can legally have an open container of alcohol.
Upon conviction for an Allen boating while intoxicated charge, you will face the same penalties that you would for a DWI.
A first offense BWI carries Class B misdemeanor charges, with penalties that include:
- Up to $2,000 in monetary fines
- Up to six months in jail
- Up to one year’s suspension of your driver’s license
A second offense BWI carries Class A misdemeanor charges, with penalties that include:
- Up to $4,000 in monetary fines
- Up to one year in jail
- Up to one year’s suspension of your driver’s license
A third (or subsequent) BWI carries third-degree felony charges, with penalties that include:
- Up to $10,000 in monetary fines
- Two to ten years in prison
- Up to two years’ suspension of your driver’s license
Upon conviction for BWI, you must pay court costs and fees and attend a mandatory alcohol safety course. You will also face the possibility of court-ordered community service, community supervision (probation), substance abuse treatment or counseling, and the installation of an ignition interlock device on your car. To restore your driver’s license after suspension, you must pay an annual fee of up to $2,000 for a total of three years.
A BWI conviction will also go on your permanent criminal record, potentially affecting your ability to rent a house, get a job, obtain a professional license, or find affordable car insurance. It may even interfere with your ability to obtain student loans or get accepted to a college or university.
Finally, having a BWI conviction on your record is the same as having a prior DWI. If you ever do get arrested for DWI, the prosecutor will pursue penalties for a second-offense drunk driving charge.
An Allen Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) Lawyer in Allen Will Fight for You
BWI convictions come at a high cost. To protect your future, consider letting a BWI lawyer help you.
When you trust a BWI lawyer from the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, you will have a powerful advocate fighting for your future. We protect your legal rights, explain the potential penalties you face, and help you explore your options.
Some of the services we provide include the following:
Investigating Your Case
We will obtain all available information and evidence regarding your case and analyze it carefully. We search for any potential violations of your legal rights as well as any errors the police may have made during your arrest.
Fighting for Reduction or Dismissal of BWI Charges
We will use any problems we find with your case as leverage to negotiate with the prosecutor to get your charges dismissed or reduced. We also explore the possibility of filing motions in court for dismissal. Although we prepare to defend you in court, we always aim for a satisfactory resolution before that becomes necessary.
Represent You at Your DMV Hearing
Just as with a DWI charge, you must attend a DMV hearing if you want to fight against the suspension of your license. The DMV hearing also carries strong implications in your BWI criminal case and can potentially help our legal team in the development of our defense strategies.
Throughout the legal process, our legal team will be available to answer your questions and provide updates about your case. We will fight tirelessly to build a strong case for your defense and to obtain the best possible results for you.
Potential Legal Defense Strategies for BWI in Allen
Although we will base our legal strategies on the details of your case, some potential challenges we may use include:
Legal Rights Violations
This may apply if the police failed to advise you of your rights as required in the statutes or if they conducted an illegal search.
No Probable Cause
The police must have probable cause to arrest you. If they failed to follow established rules and protocols for conducting a field sobriety test, for example, we may successfully get your charges reduced or dismissed.
BAC Testing or Results Errors
Whether the police request a blood or breathalyzer test in your case, the lab or testing technician must comply with all legal standards. We may also challenge BAC testing results if we identify any potential problems.
Meet With a Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) Lawyer in Allen at No Cost
Attorney Randy Isenberg of the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg has more than 35 years of experience, including having served as a state district court judge, chief felony prosecutor, and Allen criminal defense lawyer. When you trust our legal team to handle your BWI case, we will put this insight and experience to work for you.
Before you give a statement to investigators or agree to enter a guilty plea, take advantage of our no-cost, no-obligation consultation. Call now at 214-696-9253 to learn more about how a boating while intoxicated lawyer can help with your case.