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DUI vs. DWI in Texas: Austin Personal Injury Lawyer

The city of Austin consistently ranks atop the list of fastest growing metropolitan regions in the entire United States. Per 2014’s census numbers, Austin’s population experiences an almost 3% increase that year. This significant annual increase seems consistent with yearly growth statistics since 2010. As new residents flock to Central Texas, roadway traffic increases, and, thus, so do Austin auto accidents, traffic collisions, injuries, and fatalities.

Perhaps the most shocking statistic; the state of Texas did not experience a single deathless 24-hr period throughout the entire year in 2016. Every day, Travis County law officers attempt to combat these staggering numbers with apprehensive charges to motorists who are pulled over and proven to be driving while drunk; the legal terms for these charges are DUI and DWI.

DUI vs. DWI in Texas: Austin Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help

There are important distinctions between a DUI vs. DWI in Texas: Austin personal injury lawyers from Carabin Shaw dedicate all our resources to determining these distinctions as they apply to your case. We want to ensure that all our clients are given a fair chance to right their wrongs, and we believe that everyone deserves a fair legal proceeding.

DUI and DWI Differences

A DWI offense (driving while intoxicated) includes any instance of a motorist whose Blood Alcohol Concentration (or BAC) is determined to be 0.08% or higher for drivers 21 years of age and older. For drivers of commercial vehicles such as 18-wheelers and equipment transports, the legal limit is half of that number, just 0.04%.

The state of Texas has a zero tolerance policy for minora, and it is illegal for drivers younger than 21 years of age to have any identifiable trace of alcohol in their system. For these drivers, a DUI (driving under the influence) charge indicates these underage motorists have gotten behind the wheel of a car with any level of detectable intoxication.

What is the Comparative Severity of a DUI vs. DWI in Texas?

Austin personal injury lawyers are committed to fighting for our clients in cases of DUIs or DWIs, but the first step to amending a drunk driving charge is education regarding your predicament.

Both a DUI and DWI can lead to many serious issues, both long term and short term. Penalties may range from community service to any number of fines and increased car insurance rates. If you are convicted of a DWI, you could also serve jail time, even if you are a first time offender. In some states, a plea bargain can resolve a more serious DWI charge.

Drinking and driving isn’t the only way to incur a DWI charge on Austin roadways. Drivers can also receive a DWI conviction for having an open container of alcohol within arm’s reach anywhere in the area which people can sit in the car. In Texas, an open container DWI is a Class C misdemeanor which carries a maximum of up to $500.

DWI/DUI Convictions

One of the most important reasons you may need to hire a legal professional is to help you obtain an optimal plea deal from a court. If it is not your first offense, and especially if you have been convicted of a DWI charge before, the repercussions can be much more serious.

  • Fines whose amount can range from $500 all the way to $10,000 (for repeat offenders of three DWI’s or more), including surcharges
  • Jail time
  • Revoked license
  • Community service hours
  • Other probationary measures
  • Alcohol/drug awareness course
  • Sometimes, a judge will also order an approved ‘ignition interlock device’ to be installed in your car. This device requires you to breathe a completely alcohol free reading in order to drive the car
What are my Options for Combating a DWI/DUI Charge?

With appropriate correspondence with a court, many first time offenders are able to enroll in a drug and alcohol awareness course and placed on probation in order to handle a DWI charge. If these steps are not taken within 180 days, the driver is considered in violation of probation and his/her license will be rescinded. Punishment increases dramatically for multiple offenders. But the truth is that each case varies greatly.

How can an Attorney Help?

Especially if you have never dealt with the repercussions of a DWI before, presence of a lawyer is your best chance to effectively handle the aftermath and receive full compensation for your losses, damages, and injuries. An attorney with experience and all necessary information regarding your case can help mitigate the legal repercussions of a DWI or DUI.

At the law firm of Carabin Shaw, our lawyers serving Austin and the surrounding region have over 20 years of experience fighting for the rights of citizens all across Texas. If you have received a DUI or DWI in Texas and you find yourself confronted with the often confusing circumstances regarding a conviction, contact our attorneys today.

You can reach one of the knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers serving Austin from Carabin Shaw toll free, anytime day or night at 800-862-1260, or at our Austin line, 512-832-1101, or at our local offices at 1609 Shoal Creek Blvd #100,Austin, TX 78701.

Visits with the Attorney are by appointment only. Main office San Antonio, Texas.

Austin Office
1609 Shoal Creek Blvd #100
Austin, TX 78701


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