If you get a DWI under 21 years old in Texas, you face the same penalties as a driver over 21. This includes an automatic driver’s license suspension in addition to the criminal penalties you will face if convicted. However, a conviction for driving while intoxicated (DWI) can have a far more drastic effect on a younger person as their life is just getting started.
We recommend never getting behind the wheel with any amount of drugs or alcohol in your system regardless of your age, but if you do, and if the police arrest you, call the DWI defense team from Eddington Worley today at 855-600-6695. We are standing by, ready to protect your legal rights and your future.
Penalties for an Under 21 DWI
- A fine of up to $2,000
- Up to 180 days in jail
- A one-year driver’s license suspension
- Possible probation
For a second offense, you face:
- A fine of up to $4,000
- Up to a year in jail
- A potential two-year driver’s license suspension
In addition to the penalties listed above, you may lose your job, face rejection from the school of your choice, face disqualification for financial aid, or even be expelled from your current university. This conviction will follow you for the rest of your life, potentially negatively affecting you at every turn.
You might also find it impossible to afford your car insurance premiums after your conviction.
DWI vs. DUI
Many underage clients come to us wondering why they received a DWI charge, rather than a charge for driving under the influence (DUI).
Texas, like a number of other states, has zero tolerance laws in place for drivers under the age of 21. If a minor — under the age of 21, in this case — has any alcohol or drugs in their system, it is illegal for them to operate a motor vehicle. In this case, the driver would likely receive a DUI charge. However, this is only for underage drivers who have a BAC below 0.08.
In general, if you have any detectable amount of alcohol on a breath or blood test upon arrest, you will lose your license for:
- 60 days for the first offense
- 120 days for the second offense
- 180 days for the third offense
You can face longer suspension times if you refused to submit to a breath or blood test.
If the state convicts of a DUI, you will face additional penalties. Penalties may include:
- A fine of not more than $500
- 20 to 40 hours of community service
- An additional driver’s license suspension
- Mandatory enrollment in an approved Alcohol Awareness Program for both the teen and the parent
A second offense comes with more community service hours and a longer suspension.
Our Team Can Help You Fight an Under 21 DWI in Texas
If the police arrested you or a loved one for an underage DWI, the team from Eddington Worley is here to help. We can help you fight your ALR if there is sufficient time to do so. We can also take on your criminal case and fight for a more favorable outcome. There is no reason you have to face this alone.
While each case is different, we may be able to get the charges dropped, get them reduced, negotiate a more lenient sentence, or present a strong case for acquittal in court. You can trust us to protect your rights and pursue the best possible outcome for you and your future. We will answer all your questions and address your concerns. Let us go to work for you.
Talk to a Texas DWI Defense Attorney About Your Case Today
The Texas drunk driving defense team from Eddington Worley offers support and guidance for Texans facing underage DWI charges, as well as other drunk driving charges. We know how prosecutors usually approach these cases and can counter their efforts with a strong defense strategy.
Call us today at 855-600-6695 for a review of your case and to discuss your options with a member of our team.