What Are the Consequences of an Out-of-State DWI Conviction?

Harrell & Paulson

If you receive an out-of-state DWI conviction, you are not safe from receiving additional penalties when you come back to Texas. In fact, you may be facing additional fines, jail time, and permanent repercussions to your criminal record. For more information, read on to discover how a seasoned Kaufman County, Texas DWI lawyer at Harrell & Paulson, LLP, can work to build a strong criminal defense.

What are the penalties of an out-of-state DWI conviction in Texas?

Since the state of Texas is part of the Driver’s License Compact, it receives DWI information from other states. This means that your out-of-state DWI conviction will be acknowledged in Texas and penalized as if you received it in the state.

With this, you will receive some sort of driver’s license suspension. Before you are even convicted, you can have your license suspended for up to 180 days. And if you are ultimately convicted, you can expect at least a 90-day license suspension.

How can I fight the penalties of an out-of-state DWI conviction in Texas?

You can either hope that Texas’ penalties for a DWI are less severe than the state you were charged in, or you can fight these penalties altogether. That is, depending on the laws in the state where you were charged with a DWI, you may be able to avoid additional penalties in Texas altogether.

For example, by Texas law, the basic offense of a DWI consists of operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 or higher. The state of Pennsylvania upholds the same DWI statute. Therefore, your Pennsylvania conviction will count as if it were convicted in Texas.

However, if you were charged for a DWI in New York State, the statute in this state holds that you can face penalties for a BAC as low as 0.05%. So, you may be able to prove that your BAC was too low to qualify for license suspension and other penalties under Texas law. This is so long as you can provide clear and convincing evidence that your BAC was lower than 0.08.

Nonetheless, the consequences of a DWI conviction, regardless of the state, can be life-altering. This is why it is important that you properly defend yourself. That being said, you should not hesitate in retaining the services of a competent Kaufman County, Texas criminal defense lawyer today.

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