Second Offense DWI/DUI in Texas
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A second DUI in Texas is a Class A misdemeanor and the penalties are fairly severe including a minimum of one-month jail time. There is no lookback period in Texas which means that any prior DUI conviction will count towards a second charge.
The consequences for a second DUI in Texas can begin before the trial. A person who is accused of this crime will receive a notice to attend a hearing conducted by the Texas Office of Administrative Hearings. This is not a procedure to determine guilt or innocence, but rather one to assess the actions of the arresting officer and the blood alcohol content (BAC) of the accused. If it is found that the officer's actions were legal and the individual had a BAC of .08 or higher, the driver's license will be suspended for a year.
After paying $125 to have a driver's license reinstated, under the Texas Driver Responsibility Program, a driver is required to pay an additional fee of up to $2,000 per year for three years to keep them from being revoked. Texas has no lookback period and any convictions are considered in pending cases. That is each conviction remains on a person's driving record for life.
An individual convicted of a second DUI is subject to the following penalties:
- A fine of up to $4,000
- One month to a year in jail
In addtion, a judge may order community service of at least 80 hours and may require the guilty party to serve as many as 200 hours.Texas courts use a second DUI conviction as an indicator that a person may have a substance abuse problem. This commonly prompts judges to order an evaluation or rehabilitative treatment.
Because of the severe penalties and lack of a lookback period, offendors may benefit from the advice of a DUI attorney.