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There are two different types of drunk driving cases: DWI and DUI. Each of these has different details that make them different from each other. If you have been arrested for one of these, it would be in your best interest to know the difference between them and what the consequences are.

DUI, or Driving Under the Influence, can either be a civil case or a criminal case. A civil case of DUI means that the person that was arrested was under the age of 21. This also means that the person submitted to taking either a blood test or a breathalyzer test and was officially under the legal limit. The legal limit in the state of Texas is a BAC, or Blood Alcohol Concentration, of .08%. A criminal case of DUI means that the person was over the age of 21 and also agreed to take some kind of sobriety test and tested below the legal limit. Usually a criminal case DUI is considered a Class C misdemeanor. This means that for a first time offender there will be a fine of up to $5000 with no jail time. The judge will most likely assign you to do some type of community service along with an alcohol awareness class. If you are a repeating offender, the judge or court might consider sentencing you to a higher fine and maybe jail time because they would think that you haven't learned your lesson.

A DWI, or Driving While Intoxicated, case can be a little bit different. There are both civil cases as well as criminal cases, but they both mean different things. A civil DWI case means that the person was under the age of 21 and submitted to a sobriety test. The person must have tested above the legal limit of .08%. This can also be for those over the age of 21 that refuse to take a sobriety test. The punishment for this is usually a suspended license for up to 1 year, a fine up to $5000, and some amount of jail time depending on how many prior offenses the person has had.

A criminal DWI case gets to be a little bit more complicated than all the others. In most criminal cases, the person submits to a sobriety tests and has a BAC over the legal limit. This is usually considered a class B misdemeanor. The sentence for this misdemeanor is usually a fine with a minimum of $2000 and not less than 3 days in jail. The court will also probably require some kind of alcohol awareness training for this misdemeanor as well.

For more information, contact the Austin DWI Lawyers of Morales and Navarrete at 866-812-4596.

Joseph Devine


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