There are several scenarios that may lead to you being charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) in Dallas. Two of those scenarios are:
- You refused to submit a breath or blood sample.
- You submitted a breath or blood sample that showed you were legally intoxicated at the time of your arrest.
Regardless of which category you fall into, it is in your interest to fight a DWI charge, and a Dallas DWI lawyer is willing to help you do that. Call our team at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253 for more information.
Not All DWI Charges Are the Same
Being charged with DWI means different things for different people. Some factors that may impact the severity of your DWI charge include:
- Whether you submitted a blood or breath sample to the arresting officer, or when you arrived at a police station or other law enforcement facility.
- If you did submit a breath or blood sample, what your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was at the time that you submitted the sample.
- Whether you had an open container of alcohol or drugs present in your vehicle.
- Whether you had a minor in your vehicle at the time of the arrest.
- Whether you were involved in an accident that precipitated your arrest.
These and possibly other factors may determine the severity of the DWI charge that you or your loved one are currently facing.
A Conviction for DWI Can Upend Your Life in Several Ways
Before delving into the specific legal consequences for a DWI conviction, it is important to know that regardless of the severity of your looming charge, your life could be impacted for the foreseeable future by a conviction. Those who have a DWI arrest—let alone a conviction—on their record may face challenges that they did not foresee prior to being charged.
Keep in mind that there is a criminal procedure in Texas for expunging an arrest from your record (Code of Criminal Procedure, Title 1, Chapter 55). Per this statute, expunging a conviction is generally much more difficult than an arrest. Because a conviction may be visible to the public, it could result in you facing:
- Difficulty obtaining a loan, whether for a business, home, or another reason.
- Prejudice in family-related matters, such as any child custody battles in which you could become engaged.
- Difficulty obtaining employment, especially in highly competitive fields where a DWI conviction may be the difference between you and another candidate.
- The restriction of certain rights, depending on how severe your DWI charge is.
- Trouble obtaining housing, as a DWI conviction may be held against you as a possible red flag.
- Damage to your reputation and self-esteem.
It is important to recognize that while the legal penalties for a DWI conviction are generally quite steep, secondary consequences of a conviction may follow you well beyond whatever legal punishment you endure. Call a Dallas DWI lawyer at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253 for a free consultation regarding your defense.
Various Legal Penalties for a DWI Conviction
According to the Texas Penal Code Section 49.04, a first-time conviction for DWI qualifies as a Class B misdemeanor offense. The Texas Politics Project affirms that Texas sentencing guidelines for a Class B misdemeanor conviction could result in:
- A $2,000 fine
- Up to 180 days in jail
If you have an open container of alcohol in your vehicle at the time of your arrest, the offense can elevate from a Class B misdemeanor to a Class A misdemeanor, and you could face a minimum jail term of six days. You may also face a charge that is a Class A misdemeanor if your blood alcohol registered 0.15 or greater at the time of the arrest.
Conviction for a Class A misdemeanor may carry a punishment of:
- 1 year in jail
- A $4,000 fine
If you had a child in your vehicle at the time of your arrest for DWI, then you may be charged with a state jail felony. Conviction on a DWI charge categorized as a state jail felony may carry a punishment of:
- 2 years in state jail
- A $10,000 fine
If you are involved in an accident and charged with a DWI-related offense, then you may not be able to have your record ever hidden from public view. This potential outcome means that the consequences of your DWI conviction could last for the rest of your life.
A Dallas DWI Lawyer Will Help You Fight Your DWI Charge
The potential penalties for a DWI conviction make it clear why you should pull out all the stops when defending yourself from your charge. A Dallas DWI lawyer may provide several services that you could find valuable, and that may help you take your mind off of the stress of impending DWI-related charges.
Some of the ways that a lawyer may assist you include:
- Determining which type of plea is best to minimize the personal, financial, and reputational harm that you may sustain from a conviction.
- Looking for potential misconduct present in your arrest.
- Relying on experts to help strengthen your case.
- Handling all of the legal responsibilities necessary to put forth your defense.
- Defending your rights throughout your legal matter.
We understand how serious a conviction for DWI is, and we want to help you defend yourself during what is surely a stressful time.
Call Our Team at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg Today
Lead attorney Randall B. Isenberg possesses over 30 years’ experience in several facets of the legal system—as a state district judge, prosecutor, and attorney. Our team will fight on your behalf, so call us at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at (214) 696-9253 for a free consultation.