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How Long Can Your License Be Suspended for DWI?

DWI license suspension can be frustrating, but it's easy to work around

Driving while intoxicated is a serious charge that carries some hefty penalties. Along with court fines and surcharges, drivers will often face DWI license suspension as part of their punishment. Driving is a privilege according to Texas law. This means drivers must prove they are fit to drive in order to regain that privilege once lost. License suspension can be troublesome and frustrating. However, there are ways you can reinstate your driving rights before the official license suspension is up.

How Common is DWI License Suspension?

Getting your driver’s license suspended after a successful DWI conviction is a fairly common situation. License suspension is one of the harsher penalties you can face for a DWI charge, along with jail time. Judges often dole out license suspension as a way to protect the convicted driver and everyone else on the road from repeated issues. Many who face license suspension are less likely to repeat their offense in the future. The good news is that the protection and safety of drivers and passengers is the top priority moving forward. This means there are ways you can reinstate your license before the suspension period is up.

How Long Does a DWI License Suspension Last? 

License suspension for a DWI charge can vary depending on the situation, the judge, the driver’s record, and any additional charges associated with the case. For example, a driver charged with a DWI who was alone and pulled over at a checkpoint will have fewer penalties overall than a driver charged with a DWI who caused an accident. 

For drivers who have no previous DWI convictions, a license suspension between 90 days and one year is common. However, it could be longer depending on other circumstances. If a driver has a prior DWI conviction, that suspension period is doubled. It will last between 180 days and two years. While these are the typical suspension charges associated with DWIs, other charges can also affect the suspension period. For example, driving with a child passenger while intoxicated can add up to an additional 180 days to your suspension.

Because each conviction is judged on a case-by-case basis, it’s hard to say exactly how long your license suspension will be before your hearing. However, working with a DWI license suspension lawyer can help you figure out the specifics of your case and build a defense that might help reduce the charges.

License Reinstatement

Judges are aware that a license suspension can negatively impact families in a serious way. However, their goal is to protect as many people as possible, and, as such, they must do their best to keep intoxicated drivers off the road. Thankfully, drivers have an option for license reinstatement while still doing their part to prevent further DWI incidents.

With the installation of an ignition interlock device, a driver convicted of a DWI can reinstate their license. You must install the device on every vehicle you own or intend to drive. Also, you are financially responsible for the device and its installation. The ignition interlock device requires the driver to do a breathalyzer test before they can turn on the engine. It also requires the occasional re-test during long driving trips to confirm continued sobriety. 

In most cases, a judge will reinstate a suspended license once you install the ignition interlock device. However, some cases may require additional steps, such as attending a DWI driver’s course or performing community service hours. The nuances of a DWI case and conviction are complex. Working with a DWI attorney can help you understand the charges you face. It can also help you navigate both court and DMV procedures.

DWI License Suspension Lawyer

License suspension can be a hefty penalty applied to DWI cases. Without a driver’s license, you may not be able to get to work, take your kids to school, or run necessary household errands. At the Hager Law Firm, we believe that everyone has the right to a strong defense and a helping hand in trying times. Our DWI license suspension attorneys can help you understand the charges you face and what you can do about your penalties. We’ll defend you in court and help you navigate the license reinstatement process. If you face DWI charges and license suspension, call the Hager Law Firm today at (903) 466-0001.

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