Grand Prairie DWI Lawyer
While used interchangeably in some states, Driving Under the Influence (DUI) and Driving While Intoxicated/Impaired (DWI) are separate offenses under Texas law. No matter the charge, the penalties for both DUI and DWI convictions could be quite severe. Contacting a Grand Prairie DWI lawyer may be in your best interest if you are facing any type of charges involving driving under the influence.
A skilled criminal defense attorney could assist you in developing an effective defense strategy for your case. Experienced legal representation may be vital to reaching a positive outcome based on the facts of your case.
The Difference Between DUI and DWI
Texas categorizes motorists driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol into two groups, DUI and DWI. The main difference between the two is based on the age of the driver. Under the Texas Alcohol Beverage Code § 106.041, automobile drivers under the age of 21 who consume any amount of alcohol could be charged with DUI. Motorists over the age of 21 are charged with DWI. A well-versed criminal attorney could give legal advice to individuals charged with either offense.
The state of Texas has a zero-tolerance policy for minors in relation to alcohol. Even a trace amount of alcohol in the system of an automobile driver under the age of 21 could result in a DUI charge. Normally, the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit is 0.08, however, this is different for those under 21. For DUI violations, the law does not establish a minimum BAC level or evidence of impairment to result in charges. It is illegal for underage individuals to drive with any indication or detectable amount of alcohol in their system.
By contrast, DWI is a chargeable offense for all drivers. Tex. Pen. Code § 49.04 provides for two different types of DWI offenses. Drivers are considered in violation of Texas law if:
- Consumption of alcohol or drugs impairs their physical or mental faculties
- A blood, breath, or urine test indicates that their BAC is at least 0.08 percent
Both DWI charges have severe consequences, even for a first-time offender. Getting the advice of a Grand Prairie DWI attorney is advisable for individuals who are facing charges.
Consequences of Driving While Intoxicated in Grand Prairie
A first DWI offense is considered a Class B misdemeanor. According to Tex. Pen. Code § 12.23, the potential penalties for a first time DWI offender with a BAC less than 0.15 may include the following:
- Fine not exceeding $2,000
- Texas Department of Transportation Surcharge
- Jail sentence from 72 hours to 180 days
- Driver’s license suspension from 90 days to 365 days
- Installation of ignition interlock device
- Attendance of a DWI educational program, community service, and probation
For offenders who have a BAC over 0.15, the penalties are almost doubled. Other conditions may cause the charges to increase, such as DWI with a minor, and DWI manslaughter. A dedicated Grand Prairie DWI lawyer may be able to provide more information about the penalties a DWI conviction may bring and be able to help mitigate the possible consequences.
Consult with a Grand Prairie DWI Attorney for Help
The stakes are high if you are facing any alcohol-related charges. Being convicted of a DWI charge could be damning to your future. In this situation, a strong defense from a Grand Prairie DWI lawyer may be crucial. A seasoned criminal defense attorney could help protect your rights and defend yourself against any type of alcohol-related driving offenses. Call today to get started building your defense.