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DWI second offenses in Texas require an experienced and aggressive defense
The severe consequences for a DWI second offense in Texas can include heavy fines, mandatory jail time, probation, and a driver’s license suspension. Judges are much less likely to be lenient if you’re arrested under suspicion of DWI when you already have a prior DWI conviction on your record. A second DWI comes with higher stakes and a lower chance of forgiveness, making it even more of a reason to hire the right attorney.
Mark Thiessen is the only lawyer in America that is quadruple board certified in DWI,* meaning he is uniquely qualified to defend his clients in complex, high-stakes cases, and is here to answer your questions about second DWIs in Texas. If you need representation after a DWI second offense in Texas, do yourself a favor and call Thiessen Law Firm at (713) 864-9000 for expert defense.
*Mark Thiessen’s board certifications include:
- Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
- DUI Defense by the National College for DUI Defense as approved through the American Bar Association
- DUI Law by the DUI Defense Lawyers Association
- Board Certified Advocate in Criminal Trial Law by the National Board of Trial Advocacy Foundation
How much does a second DWI cost in Texas?
For a second DWI offense, you can expect to pay:
- A criminal fine of up to $4,000
- Three years of a $1,500 surcharge levied by the Texas Department of Transportation
- Court costs
- Costs associated with the suspension of your driver’s license and its reinstatement
- Higher auto insurance premiums
- SR-22 costs
- SCRAM device costs
- Intervention programs and community service fees
- Bail bonds
Monetary fines are not often the true cost of being convicted for repeat DWI offenses. Although the cost of a DWI in Texas is certainly high without considering jail time and its impact on life opportunities, the monetary fallout often pales in comparison to the ripple effect of a conviction.
Repeat convictions for DWI in Texas will result in more jail time and secondary consequences, as well as increasing legal fees that contribute to the overall DWI cost.
Are DWI second offenses felonies in Texas?
Is a second DWI a felony in Texas? Not usually, but it depends on the circumstances. A second DWI in Texas is classified as a Class A misdemeanor, with a few exceptions. Your second DWI will be charged as a felony if:
- You are arrested for DWI with a passenger under the age of 15.
- You are arrested for DWI after causing a non-lethal crash that contributes to the disfigurement or permanent injury of another. This is called intoxication assault.
- You are arrested for DWI after causing a crash that leads to the death of another party. This is called intoxication manslaughter.
DWI felony repetition in Texas occurs on third and fourth convictions for DWI, which are automatic felonies in Texas and carry prison sentences as long as ten years with mandatory minimums that start at two years. Believe us when we say, you cannot afford multiple DWI convictions, so it’s best to have the best legal team by your side to get the best possible outcome.
How long is DWI probation in Texas?
You’ll get a longer probation stint for a 2nd DWI in Texas than you would for a first offense, but generally, probation after a DWI lasts anywhere from six months to two years, depending on the specifics of your case.
Slip-ups like failing a drug test, blowing any amount of alcohol into your ignition interlock device, missing a meeting with your probation officer or a DWI education class, or any of the other infinite ways to violate the conditions of your probation will likely result in jail time. You should attempt to avoid probation by avoiding conviction at all costs.
Is jail time mandatory for a second DWI in Texas?
There is a mandatory three-day jail sentence for a second DWI in Texas, although you could end up in jail for anywhere from one month to an entire year if convicted. If any aggravating factors were present in your case and you were charged with a felony, those numbers only go up.
How many DUIs in Texas before you go to jail for longer than three days? A third DWI in Texas is automatically a felony and carries a prison sentence of anywhere from two to ten years.