The Law Offices of Gary Churak P.C.

San Antonio

14310 Northbrook Drive #210
San Antonio, Texas 78232
San Antonio TX Criminal Defense Attorney

Texas Drunk Driving Criminal Defense Attorney

There are serious consequences to drinking and driving in Texas. A DWI charge can carry fines of up to $2,000, jail time of up to 180 days, suspension of your driver's license for up to two years, and a permanent mark on your criminal record. Even if you're not convicted, the expense of fighting the charges can be substantial.

The best way to avoid these harsh penalties is simple: don't drink and drive. If you are facing a DWI charge in Texas, you must have a qualified attorney who understands the law and can fight for your rights.

An experienced criminal defense attorney will know how to challenge evidence presented by the prosecution, as well as any procedural errors that may have occurred during the arrest. They can also help negotiate a plea deal if possible, or work towards an acquittal if necessary.

No matter what your situation is, don't wait to get help--your future depends on it. With the proper representation and knowledgeable defense, you can protect your rights and come away with a better outcome than if you were to face charges on your own. Don't take chances when it comes to DWI charges in Texas; seek professional legal advice as soon as possible.

Defining DWI

DWI and DUI are two separate offenses in the state of Texas. Drivers aged 21 and older can be charged with DWI if their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08 or higher, while drivers younger than 21 can be charged with DUI if their BAC is just .02 or higher. The legal limit for driving under the influence (DUI) for people under the age of 21 years old is especially low because underage drinking is not tolerated in Texas.

In addition to the difference in BAC levels, there are other differences between DWI and DUI cases. For instance, those who are convicted of DUI may face fewer penalties than those convicted of DWI; however, both charges come with severe consequences that could include jail time, fines, and license suspension.

No matter your age or the charges you face, a DWI and/or DUI conviction can have lasting impacts on your life. If you’re facing these charges, it's best to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible to get the help you need.

They will be able to advise you of the applicable laws in Texas and work with you to provide the best defense for your case. By understanding the distinction between DWI and DUI cases in Texas, you are better equipped to protect yourself from any potential legal consequences associated with either charge.

What Is Intoxication?

In Texas, intoxication is defined as not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties because of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body.

This definition makes it illegal to drive in an intoxicated state even if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is below 0.08%—the legal BAC limit for drivers over 21 years old in Texas.

It’s important to note that “intoxication” in this context has nothing to do with how much someone may have had to drink; rather, it’s based on whether their mental and physical abilities have been impaired due to the introduction of any type of substance—including alcohol. In other words, a driver could still be considered intoxicated even if they have consumed little or no alcohol.

Texas law also holds that intoxication manslaughter is a criminal offense punishable by imprisonment in state prison for two to 20 years and/or a fine not to exceed $10,000. This crime occurs when someone causes the death of another person due to driving while intoxicated (DWI).

If an individual was at least 17 years old but younger than 21 at the time of the offense, it will be classified as “Intoxication Manslaughter-Minor” and carries different punishments.

It’s important to remember that all forms of intoxication are considered serious crimes in the state of Texas and can result in harsh penalties if someone is convicted. It’s always best to make sure you are sober before getting behind the wheel, as it could potentially save lives—and keep you from facing serious criminal charges.

Implied Consent

Implied consent in Texas law is an important concept when it comes to DUI and DWI charges. It means that a person has implicitly given their consent to perform a chemical test upon request by law enforcement if they are suspected of driving while intoxicated or impaired.

This implied consent applies regardless of whether the person verbally consents or not, as long as they are over the age of 21 and have validly been licensed to drive in Texas.

The purpose of implied consent laws is to make sure that law enforcement officers can conduct tests on suspected drunk drivers without having to worry about getting verbal permission from them first. If the driver refuses a breathalyzer test or other sobriety tests, then a license suspension would be imposed for up to a year.

Furthermore, if the driver does not take the test, then it counts as an automatic conviction for driving under the influence or DWI.

For drivers who comply with implied consent laws and do submit to testing, there are some rights that they can assert when it comes to the results. This includes having their tests administered by qualified personnel with proper certification, as well as being allowed to seek independent testing of their own to contest any findings from the initial test.

In summary, implied consent in Texas law is an important concept that applies when it comes to DUI and DWI charges. It means that a person has implicitly given their consent to perform a chemical test upon request by law enforcement if they are suspected of driving while intoxicated or impaired, and failure to comply could result in a license suspension as well as an automatic conviction for the offense.

However, those who do comply have certain rights that can be asserted when it comes to the results of their tests. Drivers need to understand these laws and their implications so they can make informed decisions if ever confronted with this situation.


Under Texas law, DWI stands for “driving while intoxicated.” This is defined as operating a motor vehicle in a public place while having an Alcohol Concentration (AC) of 0.08 or higher. It also includes operating a motor vehicle with any amount of alcohol present in its system if it impairs the driver’s mental or physical faculties to the extent that they cannot safely operate the vehicle.

Additionally, it can be proven through evidence such as field sobriety tests and breath testing that the person was impaired by drugs or alcohol, even if their AC falls below 0.08.

In terms of blood alcohol content (BAC), driving with a BAC of 0.05-0.079 may lead to a Class B Misdemeanor DWI charge. Driving with a BAC of 0.08 or more could result in a Class A Misdemeanor for one’s first DWI offense and a Felony for any subsequent offenses. If the driver is committing other traffic violations, such as speeding, at the same time, they can be charged with multiple offenses.

It is important to note that Texas also has an “open container” law that prohibits anyone from having an open container of alcohol in their vehicle while driving on public roadways. The penalty for violating this law varies depending on whether it is your first or subsequent offense and can range from fines to jail time.

Additionally, minors (persons under 21) can be charged with a DWI if their BAC is over 0.02, or even if there is any amount of alcohol present in their system if it impairs their faculties to safely operate the vehicle.

Driving while intoxicated in Texas is defined as operating a motor vehicle with an AC of 0.08 or higher and/or evidence that proves the driver’s mental or physical faculties were impaired by drugs or alcohol.

In addition to DWI charges, persons may also face other penalties such as fines and jail time for violating open container laws and minors may face DWI charges with a BAC over 0.02 or impairment by drugs or alcohol.

It is important to note that DWI is a serious offense and can have serious consequences. If you are charged with a DWI, it is important to contact an experienced lawyer right away to protect your rights.

Seek legal advice immediately if you or someone you know has been arrested for DWI. Texas law takes driving while intoxicated very seriously and convictions can lead to serious penalties including jail time and license suspension. It is always best to seek legal advice as soon as possible to protect your rights and get the best outcome possible in your case.


In Texas, Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is defined as operating a motor vehicle in a public place while having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher or operating under the influence of any other substance that impairs mental and/or physical faculties.

The offense of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), which includes driving with any detectable amount of alcohol in your system, is also included within this definition.

The penalties for DUI in Texas vary depending on the circumstances of each case. First-time offenders face up to 180 days in jail and fines of up to $2,000. For subsequent offenses and if aggravating factors are present, penalties can range from two years in prison to life in prison, as well as hefty fines.

Additionally, a person convicted of DUI will have their driver’s license suspended for up to one year and may be required to attend mandatory drug/alcohol counseling sessions.

In Texas, it is important to remember that you do not need to be driving a motor vehicle to be found guilty of DUI. Simply being in “actual physical control” of the vehicle can result in a conviction. This includes sitting behind the wheel with the keys present or even just having access to the ignition key.

It is also important to note that an individual can still be charged with a DUI if they are under 0.08 alcohol concentration but still show signs of impairment due to drugs or alcohol. In this case, the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the individual was operating a motor vehicle while impaired.

In Texas, driving under the influence is taken very seriously and can result in serious consequences for those who are convicted. Individuals need to understand their rights and the potential penalties before getting behind the wheel of a car.

As such, it is recommended that anyone facing charges consult with an experienced attorney who can provide legal advice and guidance on how best to proceed. With proper legal counsel, individuals may be able to reduce or even avoid harsh penalties and protect their future.

DUI/DWI Penalties

In Texas, DUI and DWI offenses carry serious consequences. Depending on the severity of the offense, a person can be charged with either misdemeanor or felony-level penalties.

Misdemeanor DUI/DWI charges can result in a jail sentence of up to 180 days, fines of up to $2,000, as well as possible community service and license suspension. The judge could also order an ignition interlock device to be installed in the defendant's car. Additionally, these charges are added to a criminal record which may affect future job opportunities and housing leases.

The punishment for felony DUI/DWI charges is much more severe than misdemeanors and includes prison sentences of two years or more depending on aggravating factors, fines up to $10,000, and possible driver's license revocation.

Additionally, misdemeanor charges can be upgraded to felony DUI/DWI if the defendant has three or more previous convictions within 10 years of the current offense.

In summary, Texas is serious about DUI/DWI offenses and will take necessary action for punishment depending on the severity of the crime. It’s important to understand applicable laws and consequences when operating a vehicle to avoid these penalties altogether.

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