If you or a family member under the legal drinking age of 21 is facing a DWI charge in Texas, you’re in a serious situation. You should reach out to an attorney right away who can help you navigate your next steps. It is worth it to fight for your future. A conviction could mean serving jail time and losing your license, among other consequences. You might also have trouble getting work or approval for a mortgage.
While these possibilities arise in any criminal case, you can review your legal options with a criminal defense attorney from the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg. We can build your defense case and request that authorities reduce or dismiss the charge against you. You can call us today for a free consultation.
What Happens if a Minor Gets an Underage DWI Charge in Texas?
Police officers can pull you over if they suspect you are operating a vehicle while under the influence of a substance.
DWI Charges for Underage Drivers in Texas
It is important to know that underage drivers can face a DWI charge in Texas. Your situation’s circumstances will determine if you face a DWI or a DUI.
If you are under the legal drinking age of 21, you could face a DWI charge if authorities determine you are operating a vehicle with a BAC at or above 0.08. Per Texas Penal Code Section 106.01, DUI charges are possible for underage drivers with any detectable amount of alcohol in their system.
A DWI charge carries more weight than a DUI charge in Texas, and its penalties increase each time a driver commits an offense. Per the Texas Department of Public Safety Driver License Division, the penalties for an underage DWI are as follows:
First Underage DWI Offense (Class B misdemeanor):
- Up to $2,000 fine
- 72 hours to 180 days in jail
- A driver’s license suspension of up to one year
Second Underage DWI Offense (Class A misdemeanor):
- Up to a $4,000 fine
- From 30 days up to 1 year in jail
- A driver’s license suspension of up to two years
Third Underage DWI Offense (Third-degree felony):
- Up to a $10,000 fine
- From 2 years to 10 years in prison
- A driver’s license suspension from 180 days to two years
DUI Charges for Underage Drivers in Texas
Texas has a zero-tolerance policy toward minors under age 21 who drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. It is illegal for anyone under the legal drinking age to have any detectable amount of alcohol in their system while driving.
If you are pulled over with any amount of alcohol in your system, you can face DUI charges. In Texas, a DUI charge applies to all underage drinkers.
Per the Texas Department of Transportation, if a police officer stops you for suspected drinking and driving, you could face various penalties, even if it’s your first offense. These penalties include:
- Paying up to a $500 fine
- A driver’s license suspension lasting 60 days
- 20 to 40 hours of community service
- Mandatory alcohol awareness classes
You can also face a charge if you are a minor with alcohol in your possession. You could face:
- Up to a $500 fine
- A 30- to 180-day driver’s license suspension
- 8 to 40 hours of community service
- Mandatory alcohol-awareness classes
These penalties only increase if you have more than one offense.
How Our Farmers Branch Underage DWI Attorney Can Help Your Case
Whether you are an underage driver facing a DWI charge or a parent of a minor facing this offense, our underage DWI attorney serving Farmers Branch can explain the charges you face and advise you on your next steps. You will receive straightforward legal counsel from attorneys who understand how the system works and what they can do to seek the best outcome for your situation.
When we meet, we will talk with you to learn more about you and how the situation unfolded. Before seeking a dismissal or negotiating for a lesser charge, we must establish your case and present your account of events.
Building Your Case
There may be strong evidence in your favor; if so, there may be a solid case for you. Your Farmers Branch underage DWI lawyer will seek out this evidence, which could include the following:
- Security camera footage
- Photos from the scene
- Witness testimony
- Expert testimony from a DWI expert or a car accident reconstructionist
Farmers Branch Underage DWI Lawyer Near Me (214) 696-9253
Challenging Field Sobriety Test Results
We can also review the results of field test equipment or other tools authorities used to take a reading of your blood alcohol concentration level. For example, Breathalyzers and other machines are not error-free and can give the wrong results.
We can also investigate how your arrest occurred and if the authorities followed the proper procedures during your traffic stop in Farmers Branch. Such procedures include reading your Miranda rights and determining if the officer had probable cause to pull you over. We can also determine if any evidence found during or after your stop or afterward was correctly collected.
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We Can Negotiate an Outcome That Protects Your Future
Our DWI attorneys can meet with prosecutors to work out a plea deal that could reduce the charges you face and, therefore, the penalties. As a result, you might be able to hold on to your driving privileges and avoid spending time in jail and holding a suspended driver’s license. Attorney Randall B. Isenberg, our law firm’s founder, has a wealth of experience he draws from while fighting for our clients.
His 30-plus years in the criminal justice system include various positions, including serving as a former senior chief felony prosecutor and state district trial judge. In addition, his team works hard to help clients receive deferred probation or lesser charges. You can view our recent case results to see the various outcomes we have achieved for our clients.
If you are a parent or a family member of someone fighting an underage DWI charge in Farmers Branch, we can help you, too. Consider this testimonial from our former client, Kristi Taylor, who said, “Mr. Isenberg was very upfront and honest about what to expect in a case for a family member. After meeting with multiple attorneys we felt Mr. Isenberg was the best choice to represent him.”
Call Us Today for Help From Our Farmers Branch Underage DWI Lawyers
If you or a family member has been charged with underage DWI in Farmers Branch, we know your situation and what you’re up against. We encourage you to contact us right away.
In a case review, we’ll help you understand the situation better and what it will be like to work with a Farmers Branch underage DWI attorney. To learn more and review your case with us, contact the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today.