Can a DWI Be Expunged in Texas? Expungement Questions Answered
“Can a DWI be expunged in Texas?” and “How to get a DUI off your record” are questions our Houston DWI Lawyers frequently hear. When it comes to expunging a DWI in the state of Texas, there’s bad news and good news. The bad news is that a DWI conviction can never be expunged from your criminal record in the state of Texas. The good news? Depending on the specifics of your case, you may have options for expunging your record after a DWI arrest.
Here’s what you need to know when it comes to expunging a DWI in Texas, so you can finally move on with your life.
How Do I Qualify for a DWI or DUI Expunction?
While a DWI conviction can never be expunged, a DWI or DUI arrest, charges and other types of verdicts can be erased if your case meets certain conditions.
The most pressing of these expunction conditions is whether or not your DWI arrest results in any type of final conviction. Even if your attorney argues your case down to a lesser charge (e.g. reckless driving), a conviction after a DWI arrest makes expunging any charges impossible in the state of Texas.
Here’s how to get DWI or DUI charges off your record, provided your case meets one of the following conditions:
- Your case was dismissed: If the judge dismisses your DWI or DUI case altogether, your charges and arrest are eligible for expunction, since they did not result in a final conviction. The notion of ‘final conviction’ also applies to reduced and/or shifted charges. For instance, if your attorney is able to reduce your charges down to a Class-C traffic violation, and you subsequently fulfill dismissal requirements for those charges, the original DWI arrest may then be eligible for expunction. However, any conviction for ‘reduced’ charges such as obstruction of a highway or reckless driving will render your DWI ineligible for expunction. This also applies to any final conviction as the result of a plea deal.
- A not guilty verdict: If you fight your case and receive a not guilty verdict in a court of law, your DWI charges and arrest may be eligible for expungement in Texas.
- You were arrested as a minor: If your first and only DWI offense occurred when you were a minor, and you successfully fulfilled all subsequent court orders, your charges may be eligible for expungement as an adult.
- Your case was deferred: According to Texas law, a judge may issue first-time offenders a deferred adjudication probation, in which the accused completes probation in the absence of a conviction. If you successfully complete your probation, you may also be eligible for a petition of non-disclosure, which seals your record and prevents it from being released by public agencies.
How To Get it Off Your Record? Hire a Lawyer
The process of how to get a DUI or DWI off your record can be an intimidating and drawn out process. If you need a criminal or DWI expungement in Texas, defense attorney Mark Thiessen and the team at Thiessen Law Firm can help. We have a proven track record of getting our clients the results they deserve. Just because you’re in a bad situation now doesn’t mean it has to impact the rest of your life. Contact us at (713) 999-3959 or using our online form to request a free consultation.