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Facing a DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) or DUI (Driving Under the Influence) charge can be overwhelming and frightening. At DeGuerin & Dickson Law Firm, we understand the gravity of the situation and are dedicated to providing you with the support and legal expertise you need. This comprehensive guide will help you navigate through the complexities of DWI/DUI charges, understand your rights, and outline the steps you should take to protect your future.

Understanding DWI/DUI Charges

DWI vs. DUI: While often used interchangeably, DWI and DUI can have different legal definitions depending on the state. Generally:

  • DWI: Refers to driving while impaired by alcohol or other drugs.
  • DUI: Refers to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, regardless of the level of impairment.

Legal Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Limits:

BAC stands for Blood Alcohol Concentration, which is a measure of the amount of alcohol present in a person’s bloodstream. It is expressed as a percentage. For instance, a BAC of 0.08% means that there are 0.08 grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood.

In Texas, BAC is a critical factor in determining whether a driver is legally intoxicated and subject to arrest and prosecution for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) or Driving Under the Influence (DUI). The state enforces specific BAC limits for different categories of drivers.

  • Adults (21 and over): 0.08% BAC
  • Commercial Drivers: 0.04% BAC
  • Minors (under 21): 0.02% BAC (zero-tolerance policy in many states)

Consequences of a DWI/DUI Conviction

A conviction for DWI/DUI can result in severe penalties, including:

  • Fines: Can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars.
  • Imprisonment: Jail time can vary from a few days to several years, depending on the severity and whether it is a repeat offense.
  • License Suspension/Revocation: Driving privileges can be suspended or revoked for a specified period.
  • Probation: Court-ordered supervision with specific conditions that must be met.
  • Community Service: Mandatory completion of a set number of community service hours.
  • Alcohol Education and Treatment Programs: Enrollment in programs to address alcohol or substance abuse issues.
  • Increased Insurance Premiums: Significant rise in auto insurance rates.

Immediate Steps to Take If Charged with DWI/DUI

  1. Remain Calm and Comply: Stay calm during the arrest process and comply with the officer’s instructions.
  2. Do Not Self-Incriminate: You have the right to remain silent. Avoid making statements that could be used against you.
  3. Document Everything: Take note of all details related to the arrest, including the officer’s behavior, testing procedures, and any conversations.
  4. Contact an Attorney Immediately: Seek legal representation from experienced DWI/DUI attorneys at DeGuerin & Dickson Law Firm to protect your rights and build a strong defense.

Defending Against DWI/DUI Charges

At DeGuerin & Dickson, we employ various defense strategies tailored to the specifics of your case:

  • Challenging the Stop: We examine whether the traffic stop was lawful and if the officer had reasonable suspicion to pull you over.
  • Questioning the Field Sobriety Tests: Field sobriety tests can be subjective. We investigate whether they were administered correctly.
  • Evaluating Breathalyzer Accuracy: Breathalyzer machines can be prone to errors. We scrutinize the calibration and maintenance records.
  • Medical Conditions: Certain medical conditions can affect BAC readings. We explore any relevant health issues.
  • Procedural Errors: Any violations of your rights or procedural errors by law enforcement can be grounds for dismissal.

Your Rights During the DWI/DUI Process

  • Right to Remain Silent: You are not required to answer any questions beyond providing your identification.
  • Right to an Attorney: You have the right to legal representation. Contact DeGuerin & Dickson immediately.
  • Right to Refuse Field Sobriety Tests: In many states, you can refuse field sobriety tests without immediate legal consequences.
  • Implied Consent Law: Refusing a chemical test (breath, blood, urine) can result in automatic license suspension under implied consent laws.

Why Choose DeGuerin & Dickson Law Firm

  • Experienced Defense Team: Our attorneys have extensive experience and a proven track record in handling DWI/DUI cases.
  • Personalized Approach: We treat each case individually, providing tailored legal strategies that best suit your situation.
  • Aggressive Representation: We vigorously defend your rights and work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome.
  • Supportive Guidance: We understand the stress of facing criminal charges and offer compassionate support throughout the legal process.

Facing a DWI or DUI charge is a serious matter that requires expert legal intervention. At DeGuerin & Dickson Law Firm, we are committed to defending your rights and helping you achieve the best possible outcome. Contact us today to ensure you have the strongest defense on your side.

If you or a loved one is facing DWI/DUI charges, do not hesitate to contact DeGuerin & Dickson Law Firm for a consultation. We are here to provide the expert legal assistance you need to navigate through this challenging time.

The information provided in this legal guide is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. While we strive to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information presented, it is not intended to substitute for professional legal counsel.

Every legal case is unique, and laws and regulations can change. Therefore, we strongly recommend consulting with a qualified attorney for advice regarding your specific legal situation. Reliance on any information provided in this guide is solely at your own risk.

For personalized legal assistance, please contact DeGuerin & Dickson Law Firm directly.