Do You Need a Lawyer for Your First Texas DUI?
Like most other states, Texas takes driving while intoxicated (DWI) offenses very seriously. The financial consequences are substantial, even if you are a first-time offender. Many driving while intoxicated offenses are committed by average citizens with no criminal history; however, they are among the most common crimes. Even still, anyone facing such charges should take the matter seriously; they will be prosecuted as a criminal and treated as such. Even a first DWI can have life-altering ramifications.
It is crucial to arm yourself with the facts, be informed of your rights, and understand the next steps. The best way to accomplish this is to hire an experienced Dallas-Fort Worth DWI criminal defense attorney from the Cofer Luster Law Firm.
First Offense DWI in Texas: Charges and Penalties
First offense DWIs are categorized as Class B misdemeanors in Texas. If convicted, you could face a fine up to $2,000 and spend up to 180 days in county jail.
However, Texas DWI law is nuanced and gets complex quickly. Understanding the details of your specific case is essential, which is why it is ideal to have the representation of a knowledgeable Dallas-Fort Worth DWI criminal defense lawyer.
If your first DWI offense involves any of the following, the range of punishment could increase:
• DWI with a blood alcohol content level (BAC) of 0.15 and above: Charge could increase to a Class A misdemeanor, which carries up to a $4,000 fine and up to one year in county jail.
• DWI with a passenger less than 15 years old: If you are pulled over with a child under 15 and found to be intoxicated, your DWI may be immediately increased to a state jail felony. Regardless whether the passenger is your own child, you could face a fine up to $10,000 and the possibility of 180 days to two years in a state jail facility.
• Intoxication assault: If you seriously injure another individual while intoxicated behind the wheel, you can be charged with a third-degree felony. If convicted, you could spend between two and ten years in prison and be fined up to $10,000.
• Intoxication manslaughter: Should someone die as a result of your intoxicated driving, you could face a second-degree felony punishable by two to 20 years in state prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Certain driving while intoxicated offenses may be eligible for deferred adjudication or community supervision probation. Felony offenses could be eligible for shock probation. These offenses come with a variety of collateral consequences—possible driver’s license suspension; driver’s license surcharge fees; increased insurance premiums; required use of an ignition interlock, or breath alcohol monitoring device and financial restitution.
A first-time DWI charge can take years to resolve. Seeking help from an experienced Dallas-Fort Worth criminal defense attorney is the first step to successfully navigating this complex charge.
Hire an Experienced Dallas-Fort Worth DUI Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
If you need an aggressive Dallas-Fort Worth DUI criminal defense attorney who isn’t afraid to stand up for your rights, reach out to the Cofer Luster Law Firm today. You can contact us online or by calling 682-777-3336. Remember that time is of the essence when it comes to criminal DUI matters.