A DWI stays on your record permanently in Texas unless you can get it expunged or sealed. With a DWI on your record, anyone who runs a criminal background check on you will be able to see it, including:
- Homeowners’ associations
- Potential business partners
A DWI defense lawyer from our law firm can help you explore options to get your DWI removed from your record.
What Happens After a DWI Conviction in Texas?
As soon as a DWI (driving while intoxicated) conviction becomes a court record, it goes on your criminal record. So, at that point and any time after that, a person checking your criminal background can see your DWI conviction.
People with DWIs on Their Records Face Obstacles
Having a DWI on your criminal record can subject you to discrimination, making certain aspects of your life difficult. For example, if you lost your job because of a DWI conviction, you would need to seek new employment. However, if a potential job requires you to pass a background check, your employment could be denied because of your DWI, especially if the job involves driving.
Other ways a DWI on your record could bring new obstacles into your life include the following:
- You may lose your commercial driver’s license if convicted of a DWI, which may prevent you from continuing your commercial driver career.
- You may be denied loan offers for a home, car, or other large purchases if a DWI shows up on your background check.
- Your social status may diminish as more people become aware of your criminal history.
If you have been convicted of DWI in the past, an attorney from our legal team can help you check your background to see what shows up. If your DWI conviction appears on your criminal record, we can help you explore options to have it removed. We will determine if you can have your DWI sealed or expunged.
You May Be Able to get Your DWI Conviction Sealed in Texas
A law signed in 2017, Government Code § 411.0765, allows Texas residents to petition the court for nondisclosure of certain criminal convictions. One eligible offense is driving while intoxicated.
What does ‘Nondisclosure’ Mean for Criminal Convictions in Texas?
For an individual, “nondisclosure” means they can get their conviction sealed, effectively putting it out of view or anyone who might check their background, including employers and landlords.
Following nondisclosure, only certain government workers would ever be required to disclose their DWI conviction.
What Are the Eligibility Requirements to Get Nondisclosure on a DWI Conviction?
For your DWI to be eligible for nondisclosure under the new law, it must meet the following requirements:
- It was your first offense, which means DWIs with aggravating circumstances do not qualify.
- You did not have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.15 percent or higher.
- You have served your full sentence (e.g., jail, fines, license suspension).
- You have paid all court-imposed fees and costs.
- You have not been convicted of and are not in deferred adjudication for any crimes committed since your DWI (other than a traffic offense punishable by only a fine).
- You have completed the required two-year waiting period, which may be longer in certain cases.
Our attorneys will review whether you meet the eligibility criteria for ordering nondisclosure on your DWI conviction. If you do, we will take the appropriate legal steps.
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Getting Your DWI Expunged in Texas Is an Option If You Have Not Been Convicted
The difference between nondisclosure and expungement is that while nondisclosure shields your record from public view but does not get rid of it, expungement wipes your DWI out of existence. It is like it never happened.
However, for your DWI to be eligible for expungement, you must not have been convicted. If you successfully pleaded down to a lesser charge, such as reckless driving, you may be eligible to have your DWI expunged.
If you have other charges on your record, different principles will apply to these. For example, it is typically more difficult to have a family violence-related charge or arrest expunged, even if it did not result in a conviction. A domestic violence attorney in Dallas can offer further details based on the specifics of your case.
A Texas DWI Lawyer From Our Firm Can Help You with Your Case
A Texas DWI lawyer from our law firm can help you with your DWI charge, no matter what stage you are in. If you have been arrested and are facing trial, we can help you potentially have the charge dropped, get acquitted at trial, or have your DWI charges reduced to a lesser crime, such as reckless driving. After that, we can work on getting your DWI arrest record expunged or sealed.
If you have already been convicted of DWI, we can help you petition the court for non-disclosure so that the conviction is sealed and not visible to anyone checking your background.
We Guide Our Clients Throughout the Criminal Justice Process
It can be nerve-wracking having your future on the line because of a DWI charge. By working with our lawyer, we advocate for your rights so that your charges may be reduced or eliminated. As your legal representative, we perform several duties to build your case, including:
- Investigating whether your DWI charge was lawful (e.g., the arresting officer had reasonable cause to believe you were driving under the influence)
- Investigating whether your breathalyzer or blood test results are accurate
- Reviewing the nature of your arrest, interrogation, or processing to see if your rights were violated in any way
- Gathering evidence that supports your case, such as dashcam footage that shows you were speaking clearly during your arrest
- Representing you during court hearings, including initial and pretrial hearings to negotiate bail and/or plea deals
We will advise you throughout your case so that you understand the circumstances you’re facing. If you ever have questions, your attorney will answer you accordingly.
Get a Free DWI Case Evaluation with the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg
Attorney Randall Isenberg and his team fight for the rights of the accused. Even if you have been convicted of a DWI, we believe a single mistake or lapse in good judgment should not hold you back or prevent you from accomplishing your goals.