Is a DUI a Felony in Texas?

Drinking and driving is a heavy offense that can cause significant disruption in your life. From potentially losing your job to losing your freedom, this action can have severe consequences. However, if you made the decision to drink and drive and were caught, knowing what to expect is essential. This will help you attempt to secure the best possible outcome for your circumstances, as in some cases, Texas considers a DUI a felony. However, you can rely on the help of a McAllen, Texas DWI lawyer to assess your case.

When Is a DUI a Felony?

In Texas, a DUI can be considered a felony in many instances. However, for your first and second DUI offenses, you can face a Class B and A misdemeanor, respectively. After that, the third and subsequent DUI offenses are felonies.

Similarly, there are many DUI circumstances that can land you a minimum third-degree felony. Any of the following offenses are considered a felony in Texas:

  • Driving with a BAC of .15% or more if you’ve already been charged with a DUI in the past
  • Operating a vehicle with a passenger under the age of 15 in the car while under the influence
  • You were the reason behind an accident that caused serious bodily harm

If you are operating a vehicle while under the influence and cause an accident that results in the death of another party, you will not face a DWI charge, but a separate intoxicated manslaughter charge, which is a second-degree felony.

What Constitutes a DUI?

In Texas, a DUI and DWI refer to operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

A DWI in Texas occurs when someone over the legal age of 21 has a blood alcohol concentration higher than 0.08%. This means the person is legally intoxicated, as they are above the limit of how much a person can legally consume before operating a vehicle.

However, you can still be charged with a DUI in Texas if you are under the legal limit but still driving erratically as a result of consuming alcohol. Similarly, anyone under 21 who is found with a BAC of 0.01% or higher can be charged with a DUI.

What Are the Penalties?

The penalties for a DWI in Texas are severe. This state is harsh when it comes to ensuring those who drive under the influence are punished to the fullest extent of the law.

If you are charged with a DWI in Texas, you can find that you will face jail time, a hefty fine, a suspended license, fees to retain your driver’s license, community service, DWI treatment programs, and the possibility of an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle.

Facing felony DWI charges is nothing to brush off. Ensuring you retain the help of an aggressive DWI attorney is crucial to ensuring you have someone who will keep your best interest in mind. Reach out to the Law Office of Angel Davila today.