Helping those who
need a board certified lawyer specializing in such areas as:
DWI Drunk driving
Pretrial litigation Criminal appeals
Robbery, Assault, Misapplication of fiduciary property, Resisting
arrest, Credit card abuse just to mention a few. Call
for a Free Consultation Today!
for Results from the 81st
Every two years, the Texas
Legislature assembles and enacts new bills, amends existing legislation,
and repeals old statutes. To protect the rights of our clients, my office
has prepared this summary of some of the more important legislative
changes in the area of Texas criminal law. This summary does not contain
every legislative change, nor does it contain the exact language of each
new statute. Instead, it attempts to provide you with some useful
information in areas of common concern. The new laws are effective
September 1, 2001
ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE IN A MOTOR VEHICLE
Anyone in a motor vehicle on a public highway commits a
Class C Misdemeanor (Punishable by fine only) if they knowingly possess an
open container of an alcoholic beverage. It does not matter if you have
finished drinking. An empty container can still get you a ticket.
While you cannot have open containers of alcohol in a car
or truck, the law says that it is okay for passengers to have open
containers in a bus, taxicab, limousine, motor home, or a recreational
vehicle. The police can give you a citation to appear in court, but they
will not arrest you as long as you agree in writing to appear in court on
the date and time specified.
SUSPENSION PERIODS INCREASE FOR DRIVING WHILE
INTOXICATED CONVICTIONS -- OFFENDERS WHO REPEAT WITHIN 5 YEARS:
If you are convicted of a second or subsequent DWI within
5 years of your last conviction, you will face stiffer penalties and more
serious driver's license suspensions. If you commit a second or subsequent
DWI or intoxication manslaughter within five years of your most recent DWI,
your driver's license will be suspended for one year. Additionally, if
your driver's license is suspended for a second or subsequent intoxication
assault committed within five years of your most recent intoxication
assault, the suspension continues for a period of one year.
- You will serve a minimum of 5 days in jail as a
condition of probation. You will be ineligible for an occupational
driver's license for one year. You will be required to have an ignition
interlock device installed in any car you operate for one year after your
license is no longer suspended.
|SUSPENSION PERIODS INCREASE
FOR DWI ARRESTS:
FAILING THE BREATH TEST (21 YEARS OF AGE AND
If you are asked to perform a DWI breath test and you
fail the breath test, your driver's license will be suspended for 90 days.
The suspension increases to 1 year if you have had a previous
alcohol-related or drug related enforcement contact within 10 years of the
date of your arrest. A breath test failure in Texas means you have a Blood
Alcohol Concentration of 0.08 or higher.
REFUSING THE BREATH TEST (21 YEARS OF AGE AND
If you refuse to take the breath test, your driver's
license will be automatically suspended for 6 months. The suspension
increases to 2 years if you have had a previous alcohol-related or drug
related enforcement contact within 10 years of the date of your arrest.
The police are now authorized to confiscate your driver's
license at the time of a DWI arrest for refusal to take, or failure of, a
breath test. The officer will issue you a temporary driver's permit that
expires on the 41st day after the date of issuance. The fee for
reinstating your driver's license after suspension has gone up to
TO SURRENDER YOUR DRIVERS LICENSE IS A CRIME:
It is a Class B misdemeanor if you fail or refuse to
surrender your driver's license after law enforcement personnel have demanded it.
GOOD SENSE WHEN YOU DRINK. EACH YEAR PEOPLE DIE AND ARE SERIOUSLY INJURED
BECAUSE OF DRUNK DRIVERS. ASK SOMEONE ELSE TO DRIVE WHEN YOU HAVE BEEN
DRINKING. TAKE A TAXI CAB HOME. REMEMBER, DWI IS EXPENSIVE TO DEFEND. KNOW
YOUR RIGHTS. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REFUSE ALL TESTS AND QUESTIONING BY THE
POLICE. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE REPRESENTED BY A LAWYER. IF YOU HAVE NOT
BEEN CONVICTED OF A DWI IN THE PAST FIVE YEARS, YOU ARE ELIGIBLE FOR AN
OCCUPATIONAL DRIVER'S LICENSE IF YOU REFUSE THE BREATH TEST.
David B. Frank
Attorney And Counselor At Law
The Penthouse Condominiums
1212 Guadalupe Street, Suite 103
Austin, Texas 78701
"Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas board of Legal Specialization"
Reproduction of any material on this site without written
permission is strictly prohibited.
2002-2012 David Frank, Attorney at Law. All Rights Reserved.