Charged with DWI in Dallas? Call Mike Howard

“No one should be treated like a number by the court system or their lawyer. We can customize a plan to remove your anxiety so you can get back to living your life.”

Driving While Intoxicated charges carry serious consequences in Texas. You could face jail, years of probation, and thousands of dollars in fees and fines. There are also unseen penalties. Many people don’t expect the turmoil caused by a driver’s license suspension and a permanent criminal record that often comes with a DWI.

It’s easy to feel hopeless when you’re arrested for driving while under the influence. But with an experienced defense attorney, you can help yourself and find a better way.

Dallas criminal defense attorney Mike Howard has a reputation for fighting back and delivering fantastic results for those charged with driving under the influence. If you are facing DWI charges in the Dallas area, contact the Law Offices of Mike Howard. We see the person – not just the DWI charge. Attorney Howard will offer a free assessment of your situation and clear guidance on moving past it.

Attorney Mike Howard:

  • Listens and Understands: We will start your case with an initial 1-hour case evaluation to hear your story and understand your needs. We will adjust our approach to your DWI based on your circumstances.
  • Communicates: We can explain the law, your rights, and how we will fight your DWI charges. These cases can disrupt your life and can be confusing. We can keep you up to date throughout the process.
  • Fights for You: Our record in DWI cases speaks for itself. Whether it’s negotiating a plea, fighting in court, or arguing to have your DWI dismissed, Mike is always behind you.

Get Your 30 Minute Case Evaluation
(214) 296-2221

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Types of Drunk Driving Charges We Handle

What’s commonly called drunk driving or DUI in other states is called Driving While Intoxicated (or DWI) in Texas. According to Texas Penal Code § 49.04, a person commits a DWI offense when intoxicated while operating a motor vehicle in a public place. In Texas, DUI (or driving under the influence) is a separate crime that only applies to minors.

If you or a loved one are dealing with any of the following, it’s time to contact a knowledgeable DWI defense lawyer in Dallas.

First Offense DWI

If it’s the first time you are found driving while under the influence with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over 0.08, you could be charged with a Class B Misdemeanor. A BAC of 0.08 or higher is not, however required for you to be intoxicated under the law. Even if your BAC is under 0.08 (or even if it’s zero), if any substance has caused you to lose your normal mental or physical faculties, you can be charged with DWI. If your BAC is 0.15 or higher, your charge may be enhanced to a Class A misdemeanor.

Second Offense DWI

You could be charged with a Class A misdemeanor for your second DWI. This could result in mandatory jail time, higher fines, and a longer license suspension.

Third DWI

You could be charged with a third-degree felony for your third (or greater) DWI. This will include much steeper penalties and less court sympathy regarding alternative punishments.

DWI With Child

Driving while intoxicated with a child in the vehicle is a serious offense. It is considered a state jail felony if the child is younger than 15 years old, and you’ll be exposed to significant time in custody and a felony on your record.

DWI with a CDL

In Texas and under FMCSA guidelines, CDL holders are not allowed to operate vehicles above 0.04 BAC, half the civilian limit. The penalties for DWI, if you’re a CDL holder, vary based on the situation and the individual’s record. Pin addition to possible jail, a criminal record, and fines, perhaps most importantly, a DWI may also lead to the suspension or revocation of your CDL, impacting a CDL holder’s livelihood.

For CDL holders, a first DWI is a Class B misdemeanor, with penalties of up to 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine. A second DWI could result in lifetime CDL disqualification and upgrades the offense to a Class A misdemeanor.

If carrying hazardous cargo when convicted, there could be a three-year suspension. In Texas, CDL holders have 15 days to request an ALR hearing post-suspension notification, so it’s important to consult a DWI attorney as soon as possible if you’re a professional driver charged with DWI.

Other DWI-Related Charges

See Our Results for DWI Cases

Second DWI Dismissed

Our client, a combat veteran with a history of trauma and a previous DWI, wasn’t technically eligible for a pretrial diversion. We negotiated with the prosecutor to make an exception, and his case was dismissed.

Other DUI Cases

  • Charge Reduction & Time-Served for DWI with Child Passenger
  • Deferred Adjudication for DWI 1st with no DPS “Superfine”

More Results

Driving While Intoxicated in Dallas, TX

DWIs are amongst the most common and complicated criminal charges in Texas, with harsh punishments and stigma attached to a conviction.

DWI Penalties & Consequences

If you’re convicted of a DWI in Texas, you face incarceration, fines, and license suspensions.

  • First DWI: Jail ranging from 3-180 days, maximum one-year license suspension, and up to $2,000 fine. Having an open container in the vehicle increases the minimum jail time from 3 up to 6 days.
  • Second DWI: Jail ranging from 30 days to one year, maximum 2-year license suspension, and up to $4,000 fine.
  • Third DWI: A prison sentence ranging from 2 to 10 years, a maximum two-year license suspension, and up to a $10,000 fine.
  • DWI with a Child: Possible child endangerment charge, a 2-year max jail sentence, license suspension of 180 days, and a fine up to $10,000.
  • CDL DWI: Jail ranging from 3-180 days in jail, a one-year maximum license suspension, and a $2,000 fine.
  • Intoxication Assault: Prison sentence ranging from 2-10 years, license suspension, and a max fine of $10,000.
  • Intoxication Manslaughter: Prison ranging from 2-20 years, license suspension from 180 days to two years, and a fine up to $10,000.

“Mike and his team made me feel the most comfortable...

I called a few Attorneys and Mike and his team made me feel the most comfortable. This is my first time being in a situation like this but the professionalism and communication really put me at easy especially because I’m out of state I needed someone I could trust with my life. He broke down everything for me step by step and helped me through a situation that could’ve ruined my career. So I’d like to thank Mike again for getting my case rejected!!

Ashley Thompson

Frequently Asked Dallas DWI Questions

Will a DWI Raise My Insurance?

Yes. Insurers review clients’ driving records and any possible criminal history. A DWI is a “red flag,” and they might raise your rates or cancel your policy altogether.

Are There Any Alternative Options for a DWI?

Texas offers some alternatives to a jail or prison sentence, but the circumstances of the case will dictate the available options. You might be able to enter alcohol treatment or education programs or enter a pretrial diversion program to avoid more severe sentences.

What if I Refuse a DWI Test?

Texas uses an “implied consent” rule. Simply put, when drivers get their licenses, whether they know it or not they agree to tests when they are lawfully requested. If you refuse to comply when an officer asks you to undergo a breathalyzer or chemical test, you can lose your license automatically. The prosecution may use your refusal as evidence in your trial.

Can a DWI be Expunged?

No. DWI convictions remain on your record for life. Expungements are for dropped charges or acquittals. In certain circumstances, you can get a DWI charge sealed (also called “nondisclosed”). A knowledgeable Dallas DWI lawyer can help you navigate whether your case is eligible for a nondisclosure.

How Do I Choose the Right DWI Lawyer?

Searching for DWI lawyers in Dallas can be overwhelming. After all, you are choosing someone who will hold your life, your future, and your family’s future in their hands. You have to be comfortable with them and feel that you can trust the advice they give you.

Talk to several lawyers to get a feel for them and their staff. Do they take the time necessary to get to know you, listen to what’s important to you, and answer your questions? Do they show you that you matter to them as a person and not just as a fee? Beware of lawyers who put the hard sell on you, who make big promises, or who don’t communicate the scope of the work and their fee clearly and understandably in a written contract or engagement agreement.

Dallas DWI Resources &Further Reading

Please visit our criminal defense resource center for more information about your rights and the legal process regarding DWIs and other criminal charges.

Related Articles on Dallas DWI Charges

Possible DWI Defenses in Texas

First and foremost, DWI charges must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. If the prosecutor cannot rule out even a single reasonable doubt, the presumption of innocence prevails, and you must be found not guilty. If the evidence isn’t convincing enough, your attorney may talk down the prosecutor from seeking a conviction, leading to dropped or reduced charges.

Your DWI defense lawyer might argue that you weren’t intoxicated, you weren’t the person driving, or that the police that stopped you didn’t conduct a proper investigation. There could be issues with the breathalyzers, or the police could have illegally stopped you and searched your car. Your attorney may also negotiate for you to participate in a pretrial diversion program, resulting in dropped or reduced charges.

Our Promise to Every Client

  • A clear explanation of your case and options — We take the time to understand you and how to best beat your DWI charges.
  • Your calls & messages will be answered within one business day — We use the latest communication technology to keep you informed and in touch.
  • We’re always transparent about pricing — We’re upfront about legal fees so that you won’t be surprised with a bill.
  • We’ll create a unique defense for you — Your rights are our priority. We’ll create a strategy to fight your charges.
  • We Know What Works — With over 20 years of experience in Dallas, we know the prosecutors and courts and how to get positive results in your DWI case.