No, you do not need a lawyer for a driving while intoxicated (DWI) charge. However, being arrested and facing charges for a DWI offense is a daunting experience.
Some questions that may influence your decision to work with a lawyer could include:
- Is this your first offense?
- Did anyone get injured in a collision?
- How high was your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at the time of your arrest?
- Why were you stopped?
Texas treats DWI cases very seriously. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), if you are convicted, you could face jail time, a hefty fine, and the loss of your driving privileges. A conviction on your record could have harsh implications on your ability to apply for loans, housing, and jobs.
To protect your future, even though you do not need a lawyer for a DWI charge, you should consider working with one.
DWI Convictions Remain on Your Record Forever
Texas takes a hard-line approach when it comes to prosecuting DWI charges. Even a first-time offense can result in hefty fines, license suspension, hugely increased auto insurance costs, a permanent criminal record, and possible jail time. Once you have been convicted of a DWI, you cannot have your record sealed.
Beyond what happens at the time of the arrest, having a DWI on your record forever can result in many years of tough challenges ahead. With so much at stake, having a defense lawyer help you fight the allegations against you could make a world of difference to your future.
To obtain a conviction, the burden of proof rests on the prosecution. Your lawyer can obtain and examine the evidence against you before the case goes to trial and formulate defense strategies on your behalf.
If it is your first-time offense, or if the prosecution has insufficient evidence against you, your lawyer can enter negotiations for your charges to be amended before trial.
This could see your DWI accusation reduced to the lesser charge of reckless driving, the benefits of which are:
- Reduced fines
- Keeping your driving privileges
- No history of a DWI charge on your record
- Preventing a jail sentence
Depending on the details of your case, your lawyer may be able to employ a strategy in your defense to have the charges against you dropped or reduced. While there is no guarantee that this could happen in your case, discussing your options with a DWI defense lawyer can benefit your situation.
DWI Charges Can Be Defended
The complexity of DWI cases can make them difficult to defend, especially if aggravating circumstances apply to the charges.
Examples could be:
- Having a BAC reading of 0.15% or higher
- Prior DWI convictions
- An open container in your car when you were pulled over
- Having a minor in the car
- Causing an accident when driving while intoxicated that resulted in serious injury or a fatality to another person
In these situations, it is particularly beneficial to seek legal representation that has your best interests in mind. Depending on the severity of your offense, you could be looking at a felony charge.
Your Lawyer Can Dispute the Charges Against You
Your defense lawyer can challenge the charges you face by looking for any discrepancies in the evidence against you. For example, if you were not read your Miranda rights at the time of your arrest, your lawyer can argue that your arrest was improperly conducted.
Elements in your case that could work to promote your defense include:
- You were not intoxicated at the time of your arrest
- The evidence against you was improperly collected or inaccurate
- There is insufficient evidence for a prosecution
- There was a lack of reasonable suspicion to stop your vehicle
- The breathalyzer or blood test conducted yielded unreliable results
If you have been arrested and charged with a DWI, you do not have to face this difficult time alone. There may be options to avoid conviction or have your charges reduced.
Act Today to Protect Your Tomorrow
The dedicated and experienced team at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg wants to help you move beyond your DWI arrest or conviction. Our founding partner, Randall B. Isenberg, worked for over 30 years as a former prosecutor and state district judge. He imparts his knowledge and experience onto our team, which can serve to benefit your case if it goes to court.
If you would like to find out more about Texas DWI dismissal, talk to us in a free case evaluation today at (214) 696-9253. We are ready to help. Let us put our knowledge and reputation to work for you during this tough time.