Facing DWI charges can be extremely stressful. Due to the nationwide crackdown on intoxicated driving, the potential consequences of a DWI conviction can include jail time, license suspensions, fines, and more. For more information about the intimidating aspects of a Fort Worth DWI charge and what you can do to defend yourself, you may want to enlist the help of legal counsel.
A criminal defense lawyer may benefit you in various ways when facing DWI charges in Fort Worth. With legal assistance, you may be able to negotiate reduced or dismissed charges depending on the facts and evidence in your case. Alternatively, you may be able to seek reduced penalties for any conviction.
DWI and Permanent Criminal Records
Facing DWI charges is challenging enough, but when individuals realize that they may have a permanent criminal record for a DWI conviction, it can be devastating. In Fort Worth, one of the most intimidating aspects of a DWI charge can be the knowledge that a conviction will appear whenever prospective employers, landlords, lending institutions, and others conduct a background check. Having a permanent criminal conviction may cause individuals to lose out on profitable job opportunities and promotions.
Furthermore, if someone has an occupation that requires a professional license, a routine background check could result in the suspension, revocation, or denial of that license. An inability to get the appropriate certification can effectively prevent individuals from working in specific careers. The prospect of losing the job that they have worked so hard for can be catastrophic and directly impact their ability to support themselves and their families.
DWI and Driving Privileges
One of the most difficult consequences of a DWI charge in Fort Worth is the probability of a license suspension. Individuals facing DWI charges because they had a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 percent or more will face a 90-day administrative license suspension for a first offense and extended suspension periods for second and subsequent offenses. Individuals who refuse to provide a breath or blood sample, however, will face an automatic 180-day suspension, even for a first offense.
Both these suspensions begin 40 days following an arrest for DWI. Until that time, individuals will have a temporary driving permit. They can challenge these suspensions by requesting an administrative license revocation (ALR) hearing within 15 days of their arrest. If they are unsuccessful at their hearings, the suspensions will begin after they have received notice of the decision following the hearing.
Losing driving privileges can be devastating, especially for those living in rural areas or without access to public transportation. If someone needs to drive for their job, a license suspension could put them out of work.
Strict Enforcement of DWI Laws
Another daunting aspect of a potential DWI conviction is the fact that local authorities take these offenses very seriously. Some prosecutors may be unwilling to even discuss the possibility of reduced or dismissed charges or a reduction in penalties due to mitigating factors. Others may insist on jail time, with no exceptions.
The emphasis by the law enforcement community on arresting and prosecuting individuals for DUI and related offenses can make it even more crucial to contact defense counsel for assistance. Legal counsel can weigh the evidence in support of the charges and determine what defenses may be available in the case.
Let a Fort Worth DWI Attorney Ease Your Concerns
A permanent criminal record that appears on background checks, loss of driving privileges for an extended period, and the notoriously strict enforcement impaired driving laws are just a few intimidating aspects of a Fort Worth DWI charge. These factors can combine to create a terrifying and highly stressful experience, especially for individuals who have no prior experience with the criminal justice system.
Arming yourself with legal advice and representation may be an essential step to protect yourself from an undesirable outcome to your DWI charges. By retaining legal counsel, you could increase your chances of a positive outcome.