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Convictions for DWI’s are like stacking bricks as penalties stiffen with each subsequent DWI accusation. That is why it is important to seek a qualified DWI Houston lawyer if you are charged with the criminal offense of Driving While Intoxicated.
DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer – What is the difference between a first DWI and a second DWI?
|First DWI||Second DWI|
|Offense Level||Class B Misdemeanor||Class A Misdemeanor|
|Punishment Range||72 hours – 180 days in jail and/or up to a $2000 fine.||30 days – 1 year in jail and/or up to a $4000 fine|
|Jail as a “Condition of Probation”||0 – 30 days. Typically, no jail time is given as a condition of probation on a first DWI.||Yes. 72 hours minimum, unless prior offense w/in 5 years of present offense than 5 day minimum.|
|Credit for Time Served as a “Condition of Probation”||Yes, unless under 21 years of age.||No.|
|Interlock Required as a “Condition of Probation”.||Mandatory if, under the age of 21, or the Blood Alcohol Level is 0.15 or higher.||Mandatory if, under the age of 21, or the Blood Alcohol Level is 0.15 or higher or previous DWI conviction is w/in 10 years.|
|License Suspension||90 – 365 days, but completion of a DWI education program stays the suspension. If under the age of 21, there is a mandatory 1 yr. suspension, unless an interlock device is ordered.||180 days – 2 years, unless prior offense is w/in 5 years of present offense, than 1 yr. – 2 yrs.|
DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer – What is a 2nd DWI under Texas Law?
A second DWI means you have been convicted of, not arrested, but convicted of a prior DWI – regardless of how long ago that may have been.
DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer – I was charged with a DWI and got another DWI while on bond, is this considered a 2nd DWI?
No. In order to be charged with a 2nd DWI, you must have been convicted of a prior DWI, prior to picking up the subsequent DWI. Although, it certainly is a violation of your bail conditions.
DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer – Can the judge require an interlock device on my car for a 2nd DWI as a “Condition of bail”?
Yes. For a 2nd DWI, the judge is required to place an interlock device on your car when you are released on bond from jail. Some counties, place interlock devices as a condition of bail for 1st DWIs too.
DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer – My license was suspended; can I get an occupational license?
DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer – Do surcharges apply for a 2nd DWI?
Yes, and it can be expensive. In order to maintain your license you must pay DPS $1,500 per year for 3 years. If the blood alcohol content is over 0.16, the surcharge is $2,000 per year for 3 years.
Note: Your DWI Criminal Defense Lawyer should be able to answer you questions in greater detail. Keep in mind that laws related to DWIs, license suspensions, and surcharges are constantly changing with each legislative session.
Contact a DWI Houston Lawyer at our firm to learn more about fighting DWI charges.