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The criminal penalties for an Austin driving while intoxicated (DWI) offense are serious and could include fines, a driver’s license suspension, and even incarceration. Fortunately, with a qualified DWI lawyer on your side, you may be able to avoid the punishment associated with a drunk-driving conviction.
The penalties for a DWI conviction depend on a number of factors, such as if you have any prior convictions, were transporting a child at the time of arrest, or had an open container of alcohol in your vehicle.
The Consequences Will Vary
For a first DWI offense, you may be ordered to pay a fine of up to $2,000, serve a jail sentence ranging from 3 to 180 days, and lose driving privileges for 90 days to 12 months. A second DWI offense could result in a fine of up to $4,000, a jail sentence ranging from 30 days to 1 year, and a driver’s license suspension for 180 days to 2 years.
A third DWI offense differs from the first two because is it classified as a felony offense. If convicted of a third offense, you may be ordered to a fine of up to $10,000, a prison sentence ranging from 2 to 10 years, and a driver’s license suspension for 180 days to 2 years.
If a DWI involved an accident with personal injuries, the sentence may include 2 to 10 years in prison as well as a fine of up to $10,000. For a DWI with an open container of alcohol, you could be sentenced to a minimum of 6 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,000.
While these are all serious penalties, you may be offered probation in lieu of jail time, a driver’s license suspension, and a portion of your fines. If you have probation, you must agree to follow a number of conditions; if you fail to do so, you will have to serve your original sentence. If you agree to probation, you may be required to check in with a probation officer on a monthly basis, pay a supervisory fee, perform community service, attend alcohol education classes, abstain from alcohol, as well as agree to several other conditions. Those who are on probation should also avoid committing any other crimes during this period to avoid increased penalties.
Our Austin attorneys have a successful record of helping clients avoid these penalties by having their charges reduced or dismissed.