Since the beginning of my career as a criminal defense attorney, I’ve striven to do more for my clients. It’s been quite a journey. Over time, I earned a Lawyer-Scientist designation from the American Chemical Society and the Chemistry and the Law Division; was named a top 100 Super Lawyer in Texas; became Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization; and passed the Board Certification test in DUI Law by the DUI Defense Lawyers Association. 

All of these accomplishments paved the way for my latest achievement yet: Recently, I became one of only five lawyers in Texas to be Board Certified in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense. To be selected is a rare distinction, a testament to the arduous process undergone by the attorneys who wish to achieve it.

There are only 46 lawyers in the Nation to have passed this test, and no one has passed it in Texas in the last 10 years, with only 5 currently practicing in Texas. Only 3 of these 5 are also Board Certified in Criminal Law by TBLS, and of those 3, I am the only one who is also an ACS/CHAL Lawyer-Scientist. 

In fact, attorneys who are Board Certified in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. are the only ones allowed to say they “specialize” in DWI. To those who don’t practice law, this may not sound like a big deal. But in my field, there is no higher honor a DWI defense lawyer can achieve. Here’s why. 

What it means to be Board Certified in DWI Defense Law 

As mentioned previously, attorneys who are Board Certified in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. are the only ones allowed to say they “specialize” in DWI. This limitation is placed on attorneys to ensure that those facing the terrifying consequence of a DWI are not misled by less-capable attorneys during their time of need. 

Simply put, not all attorneys possess the necessary proficiency in science, law, and ethics to declare themselves specialists or experts, and the law works to protect the accused from receiving representation from those with false qualifications.

Selecting a DWI attorney who is Board Certified in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. means choosing an attorney who has been “recognized as a national expert” in DWI law, and an attorney whom you can trust to reach “the best possible outcome” in your DWI/DUI case. 

How does a DWI lawyer become Board Certified?

To become Board Certified, I didn’t just pay a random website an annual fee to say that I’m the best. Earning Board Certification in DWI in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. means that have:

1. The misdemeanor and felony trial experience to even be a candidate to sit for the exam 

2. Wrote an appeal based on a fact scenario

3. Argued that appeal to a panel of judges

4. Pass a rigorous exam

As of this posting, only 5 Texas attorneys are Board Certified in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense, Inc., and the last attorney to receive Certification did so 10 years ago. In 2020, only 2 DWI attorneys passed the test at all. 

In order to pass the oral and written exams necessary to obtain certification, I had to display extensive knowledge in the following areas: 

  • Substantive law related to DWI and related crimes
  • The science behind chemical testing
  • NHTSA guidelines on field sobriety tests
  • NHTSA guidelines on drug recognition tests

Certification isn’t a one-and-done process, either. In order to renew my certification, I must display continued proficiency every five years.

Why working with a Board Certified DWI attorney matters

If you’ve been charged with DWI or a related offense like intoxication manslaughter, it’s important to work with an attorney who specializes in these offenses. Depending on the specific circumstances of your case, working with an attorney who is Board Certified in DWI Defense Law by the National College for DUI Defense could be the difference between pleading guilty to a crime you didn’t truly commit and successfully fighting for exoneration at trial.

These are just some of the reasons why hiring an attorney who truly specializes in DWI can make a huge difference in the outcome of your case:

  • Jury respect: Qualifications help to establish credibility, and more knowledgeable attorneys play better with juries. When dealing with a prosecutor whose sole goal is to prove you guilty, it’s vital that your advocate is recognized as an expert in their field and that juries find their arguments credible.
  • Finding the win: Many falsely believe that it’s impossible to contest a DWI, making DWIs open-and-shut cases in which your only option is to plead guilty. A DWI specialist can use their expertise in toxicology and DWI law to find the truth behind whether your lab results tell the whole story.
  • Understanding the evidence: It takes a truly experienced and skilled attorney to challenge the results of a DWI blood or breath test. As a Board Certified DWI specialist and an ACS/CHAL Lawyer-Scientist, I understand the many technical factors that can lead to false positives and bad tests and can use this knowledge to present a credible case to a jury during trial.

Looking for a Board Certified Houston DWI attorney to fight for you? Look no further. 

Board Certification is more than a certificate to put on my wall or a title to put by my name. The knowledge embodied by this certificate helps my firm deliver the type of superior defense and service for our clients of which few firms In Texas are capable.

If you or a loved one have been charged with DWI, intoxication manslaughter, intoxication assault, or any other related charge, you need specialized defense to effectively and aggressively fight the allegations against you. 

I can provide that defense. My firm has an established track record of success fighting these and other criminal charges in Texas, and we are here to serve you in your time of need. 

See the difference that working with an attorney Board Certified in DWI Defense can make. Contact us online or call us at 713-864-9000 to schedule a free consultation.

Mark Thiessen

Mark Thiessen is an aggressive trial lawyer best known for his devotion to justice for his clients and high rank as a DWI Super Lawyer in Texas.