Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious offense that can have significant consequences. A DWI conviction can result in fines, license suspension, and even jail time. In this blog post, we’ll explore the consequences of a DWI conviction and how it can impact your life.
Fines and Court Costs
One of the most immediate consequences of a DWI conviction is fines and court costs. The amount of fines and costs can vary depending on the state and the severity of the offense. In some states, fines can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars, and court costs can add hundreds or thousands of dollars more. In Texas, a first offense DWI is punishable up to $2000 and a second offense $4000.
Another consequence of a DWI conviction is license suspension. Most states will suspend your driver’s license for a period of time if you’re convicted of a DWI. The length of the suspension can vary depending on the state and the severity of the offense. In some states, a first-time DWI conviction can result in a license suspension of 90 days to a year.
Ignition Interlock Device
In some cases, a DWI conviction can result in the installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle. An IID is a breathalyzer device that is installed in your car’s dashboard. Before you can start your car, you must blow into the device to measure your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). If your BAC is above a certain level, your car won’t start.
A DWI conviction will also result in a criminal record, which can have significant long-term consequences. A criminal record can make it difficult to find employment, housing, or even loans. It can also impact your ability to obtain professional licenses or security clearances.
Depending on the severity of the offense, a DWI conviction can result in jail time. In some states, a first-time DWI conviction can result in a few days or weeks in jail, while subsequent offenses can result in much longer sentences. In Texas, a first offense DWI is punishable up to 180 days in jail and a second up to one year in jail.
Increased Insurance Premiums
A DWI conviction can also result in increased insurance premiums. Insurance companies view drivers with a DWI conviction as high-risk and may raise their premiums significantly. In some cases, insurance companies may even cancel your policy altogether.
If you’re convicted of a DWI, your ability to travel may also be limited. Some countries have strict entry requirements for individuals with a criminal record, and a DWI conviction can make it difficult or even impossible to enter certain countries.
A DWI conviction can have significant consequences that can impact your life in many ways. Fines, license suspension, ignition interlock devices, a criminal record, jail time, increased insurance premiums, and limited travel are just some of the consequences you may face. If you’re facing DWI charges, it’s important to seek the advice and representation of an experienced DWI defense attorney. They can help you understand your rights and develop effective defense strategies to protect them.