The consequences of drunk driving are numerous and life-changing, whether it is a first-time occurrence or a repeat offense. In Texas, a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher becomes a fast track to an arrest, whether a suspect is driving a car, flying an airplane, or boating on lakes throughout the Lonestar State.
One of the more damaging penalties is a DUI being on a permanent record for multiple years.
A life-changing impact
The severe offense results in various consequences, from legal implications to skyrocketing insurance rates upon renewal of the policy. Many struggles to get and maintain coverage. Those convicted face suspension of their license, significant fines in the thousands of dollars, and potential time behind bars for hours, weeks, and even years.
All but two states have administrative license suspension (ALS) for an initial drunk driving conviction. Many areas of the country provide exceptions for traveling to and from work. The consequences for professionals with a commercial driver’s license (CDL) could be career-ending. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration sets the legal limit at 0.04 percent.
Most states also have an additional category for higher BACs, particularly 0.15 percent and more, and impose more draconian punitive measures.
Ignition interlock mandates
What all states have in common is ignition interlock systems that disable motor vehicle engines if alcohol is detected after blowing into the device. A majority of states require installation following a DUI conviction.
Beyond the embarrassment of a criminal record, the multitude of penalties can impact all aspects of life. The stakes are high and require the help of a skilled and experienced criminal defense attorney to fight for the best possible outcome.