DWI and Texas Driver’s License Suspension
If you have been arrested for Driving While Intoxicated in Texas, there’s chance that your driver’s license will be suspended. For individuals who are arrested for alcohol related offenses there are two types of suspensions: administrative suspensions imposed by the Texas Department of Public Safety and court ordered suspensions which are imposed if you’re convicted of driving while intoxicated.
Initially, if you are stopped by a police officer and he suspects you of driving while intoxicated, the officer who stopped you will ask you to provide a specimen of you breath or blood in order to test its alcohol content. If you refuse to provide a specimen, the Department of Public Safety can suspend your license for 180 days. If, on the other hand, you provide a breath or blood specimen and its alcohol content is 0.08 or higher then your license will be suspended for a period of 90 days. In either of these instances, you have 15 days to request an administrative hearing to fight this license suspension. We can help you fight this administrative suspension.
In addition to the administrative suspensions described above, adults who are convicted of DWI may have their driver’s license suspended for a period not to exceed two years (for first-time offenses). If you are convicted of a second or subsequent DWI offense, your driver’s license will be suspended for a minimum of 180 days, or if the two convictions are within 5 years of each other, the suspension will be for at least one year.
Keep in mind, it is possible to have your license suspended for both administrative reasons (breath/blood test failure or refusal) AND for a criminal conviction arising from the same arrest.
Even if your license is suspended, an occupational license may be issued in order to allow you to continue to drive to work. Ask us about the legal steps as well as additional costs and fees necessary to obtain an occupational driver’s license.
Driver License Reinstatement Requirements
Generally speaking, prior to the renewal or issuance of a driver license, you must:
1. Pay the required reinstatement fee and/or additional administrative fee if you failed to complete the Alcohol Education Program;
2. Obtain a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR-22) from an authorized insurance company and then submit it to DPS (an SR-22 must be maintained for two years from the date of conviction); and
3. Submit to DPS the certificate of completion for the appropriate Repeat Offenders’ DWI Drug Education Program if required by the court. The certificate of completion must be received by DPS prior to the expiration of the suspension to prevent an additional revocation period.
There are many other aspects related to driver’s license suspensions and DWI charges and each case is unique. Don’t hesitate to ask questions about your license suspension so you can meet all of the legal requirements to ensure you have a valid Texas driver’s license.