In the context of the Texas Alcohol Beverage Code, a “minor” is considered a person who is under the age of 21. Minors are only allowed to consume alcohol if in the presence of an adult parent, guardian, spouse, or court-ordered guardian. However, no matter what age you are, driving while intoxicated is illegal.
Possible legal consequences for underage individuals facing a driving while intoxicated (DWI) charge include:
- License suspension
- Jail time
The Texas Penal Code does not provide much leniency for driving while intoxicated just because you are underage. If you are facing a DWI charge as an underage person, you could face the full force of the law. An Arlington underage DWI lawyer may be able to assist in your defense.
Call our team at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253 for a free consultation.
Underage Drinking and Driving May Result In Adult Consequences
Per Texas Penal Code §49.04(b), driving while intoxicated generally carries the classification of a Class B misdemeanor. However, this can be subject to change based on the details of your situation. For example, if your actions resulted in a collision that harmed other people, you could be facing felony charges. Additionally, if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level registered .15%––nearly double the legal limit––you could be facing a Class A misdemeanor charge.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, if you are under the age of 21 and pulled over for drinking and driving, for a first-time offense, you could be facing:
- A fine no more than $500
- A 60-day suspension of your license
- 20 to 40 hours of community service
- Mandatory alcohol awareness classes
If your BAC level is higher than .08% and you are over the age of 17 years old, you could be facing:
- A fine no more than $2,000
- Three to 180 days in jail
- License suspension for 90 days to a year
In addition to these penalties, the Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS) notes that an underage DWI charge could result in:
- Serving the required suspension period of your driver’s license or permit
- Getting a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR-22) from an insurance company and must be in place for at least two years from the date of your conviction
- Paying $100 to reinstate your license at the conclusion of your suspension period, which may include additional fees as well
Depending on the details of your situation, you could be facing additional penalties to the ones we have included here.
Offenses That Could Increase the Charges Against You
You could face additional legal consequences if your arrest included aggravating factors, especially if you are 18 years of age or older.
Some of those aggravating factors could include:
- Being in an accident that caused bodily injury, especially if somebody was killed
- Having a child passenger in your vehicle
- Having an open alcohol container in the vehicle at the time of your arrest
- Being in possession of drugs or any other illicit substances
Such factors could result in your charge being enhanced to a more serious misdemeanor or even a felony. Yet, whether you are facing a misdemeanor or felony charge, an Arlington underage DWI lawyer may be able to strategize a plan for your defense.
Call our team at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253 for a free consultation regarding your defense against a pending DWI charge.
A DWI Conviction May Derail Your Future
A DWI conviction is undesirable, no matter how old you are. You should know that if your DWI charges result in a conviction, your criminal record can never be sealed. Your mistake could follow you for the rest of your life, coming up on background checks and interfering with your ambitions.
You may find that a DWI conviction could impact:
- Your academic standing
- Your ability to get into certain colleges or universities
- Future employment prospects
- Your ability to receive financial assistance and housing in the future
- Your car insurance rates
You likely want to do everything in your power to avoid such a conviction. A lawyer from the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg can help fight against your DWI charge.
How a Lawyer Can Get Your Future Back on Track
The goal of your Arlington underage DWI lawyer is to have the charges against you dropped or reduced. They will start by examining the details of your case, and from there, formulate a plan that protects your future. At the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, we understand that this is likely a time full of stress and uncertainty. When we take on your case, we are dedicated to promoting a beneficial outcome for your situation.
Some of the services that a lawyer may provide include:
- Reviewing the evidence present in your case
- Determining whether the charges against you are legitimate
- Pushing for a dismissal of the charges against you
- Exploring any plea agreements that are available to you
- Handling all of your legal needs with respect to your case
- Defending your rights
Depending on the details of your situation, your legal team may be able to render services that we have not listed here.
Call the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg Today
Our team is ready to start advocating for your legal rights today. We believe that you should not have a single error dictate the rest of your life. Our founding partner, Randall B. Isenberg, has more than 30 years’ experience as a former state district judge, prosecutor, and now as a criminal defense attorney. We understand how DWI cases unfold and can take measures to protect your future.
Call our team at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253 to learn how an Arlington underage DWI lawyer may be of service to you.