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What to expect with second and third DWIs in Texas

If you're already been convicted of a DWI, you know there are a range of consequences. But did you know that with each conviction, the penalties get increasingly severe.?

Here is a summary of what you need to know about this, if you like to drink or know people who do.

In Texas, the official term for drunk driving is driving while intoxicated (DWI). The state's DWI laws prohibit motorists from operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08%, while under the influence of drugs or otherwise clearly impaired.

The potential penalties for DWI offenses beyond the first one are as follows:

Second Offense

Third Offense

  • A $10,000 fine
  • Two to 10 years in prison
  • Suspended driver's license for up to two years
  • An annual fee of $1,000, $1,500, or $2,000 for three years to retain driver license

If you receive two or more DWIs within five years you will need to install an ignition interlocking device in your vehicle, which is a breathalyzer that requires a passing BAC in order to start the ignition.

Other Penalty Enhancements

There are a few additional concerns related to DWIs to keep in mind. If you're hoping to avoid another charge by refusing a breathalyzer test, keep in mind that your license will automatically be revoked for 180 days. If there is an open container of alcohol in the vehicle, you could be fined up to $500. Since it is a repeat offense, it is more likely you will be fined the full amount.

Finally, you could get an added charge of child endangerment if there are passengers under the age of 15 in the car with you. This could also come with a fine up to $10,000, up to two years in jail, and losing your license for 180 days. Again, if it isn't your first DWI, you will most likely get more harsh punishment for this particular charge.

Tips For Avoiding Another DWI

Here are some things you can do to avoid another DWI:

  • Don't drive after drinking, even if you think you are fine to drive
  • Establish a designated driver
  • Call a cab or use a ride-sharing service
  • If possible, just stay the night wherever you are

If you are someone who already has a DWI on your record, these penalties should be kept firmly in mind. One time is bad enough, and each time after that the consequences get increasingly worse.

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