Criminal Defense and Title IX
Attorneys Austin, TX

Under 21 DUI Defense Attorneys in Austin, TX

Our law firm has decades of experience helping Texans fight DUI charges

In Texas, the distinction between DWI and DUI offenses holds importance, as the penalties and legal implications differ. For the most part, driving under the influence (DUI) charges are reserved for minors and DWIs are applied to people ages 21 and up.

The sentencing consequences of a Texas DWI conviction are generally more severe. However, the social consequences of a DUI on your criminal record at such a young age can cause long-term damage that may be difficult to overcome.

At Botsford & Roark, our experienced DUI under 21 defense lawyers are ready to fight for your freedom and help you regain control of your life. If you or your child has been charged with DUI in Austin, Travis County, or another Central Texas community, contact us for a free case evaluation.

Texas’ ‘zero tolerance’ alcohol policy for drivers under 21

Texas follows a strict zero-tolerance policy for underage DUI. This means that individuals younger than 21 years old who are found with any amount of alcohol in their system while driving can be charged with drunk driving. For prosecutors to convict someone of DUI, they typically must prove a handful of circumstances, including:

  • The individual was a minor, under age 21, at the time of the incident.
  • The minor consumed alcohol.
  • The minor was operating a motor vehicle.
  • There was a detectable amount of alcohol in the minor’s system when they were driving.
  • The operation of the motor vehicle was in a public place.

DUI under 21 penalties in Texas

When a minor is suspected of DUI in Texas, the police officer can choose whether to take them into custody or issue a citation. In either situation, potential DUI penalties include:

Driving under the influence of alcohol by minor

  • Class C misdemeanor
  • Up to $500 fine, 20-40 hours of community service, 30-day driver’s license suspension, mandatory completion of an alcohol or substance misuse program

If the minor has been previously convicted at least one or more times of this or a similar offense, the penalties may be increased:

  • Up to 180 days in jail, $500-$2,00 fine, 40-60 hours of community service, 60-180 days driver’s license suspension, mandatory completion of an alcohol or substance misuse awareness program

DWI under 21

A DUI can be elevated to DWI if the minor driver is between 17 and 21 years old and has a blood or breath BAC of 0.08% or higher, or if they were driving while under the influence of drugs:

  • Class B misdemeanor
  • 3-180 days in jail, up to $2,000 fine

Why choose Botsford & Roark?

Having a DUI on one's criminal record while under 21 can have serious repercussions. It can hinder future educational and employment opportunities, as many institutions and employers view such offenses negatively, potentially impacting one's long-term prospects and personal development. Additionally, it may lead to increased insurance premiums and legal consequences in the future.

At Botsford & Roark, we aren’t just lawyers; we’re advocates for your rights and reputation. If you, your son, or daughter are facing DUI charges in Central Texas, contact us for a free, confidential case evaluation.

A member of our team is available to hear from you any time, 24/7. We can listen to the details of what happened, answer questions, explain how the law applies to your specific situation, and help you decide what to do next. There is no obligation to hire us; Just information you can trust. Contact us today.

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