Texas Has Tougher Penalties on First Offense DWIs Where A Person’s BAC Is Above 0.15

By Bo Kalabus
www.rosenthalwadas.com;
b.kalabus@rosenthalwadas.com
24-hour Jail Release: 214-402-4364

Prior to September 1, 2011, a first offense DWI in Texas, regardless of the person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC), was punishable by a fine that would range from $0 to $2,000 and from 72 hours to 180 days in jail (which could be probated).

The punishment listed above is still good law on a DWI first offense, but only if the person’s BAC is below a 0.15. For reference, a 0.08 BAC is considered legally intoxicated in Texas. Following the Legislative changes that took effect on September 1, 2011, if a person’s blood alcohol concentration is above a 0.15, the punishment range is enhanced to a fine from $0 to $4,000 and from 0 days to 1 year in jail (again, which may be probated) regardless of whether it is a first offense or not.

The 0.15 BAC and above enhancement also has significant impact on the surcharges that DPS will levy on a person following a DWI conviction. Specifically, if a person’s BAC is below a 0.15, the standard DPS surcharge for having a driver’s license following a DWI conviction will be $1,000 a year for a period of three years. If a person’s BAC is above 0.15, then the surcharge jumps up to $2,000 a year for the three-year period.

If you are facing a DWI charge, you should contact an experienced Collin county criminal lawyer to help you defend your case.

Speak Your Mind

*