To Avoid a DWI Conviction: Do This, Not That

by | Mar 9, 2012 | Law Services

Most of us think we’re responsible enough not to drive impaired. A DWI arrest – much less a conviction – is something we think could never happen to us. But as any experienced DWI lawyer in Austin, TX or elsewhere will quickly point out, the reality is that it’s much more possible than we realize. Drivers in cities with a lively nightlife, like Austin, TX, often get behind the wheel thinking they’re perfectly fine, only to find themselves sobering up in the city’s drunk tank. If you’re ever attempted to drive after a couple of drinks, it might be helpful to know what you should do – and not do – at the moment you get pulled over.

DO be aware of your state’s legal limit for blood-alcohol level and familiarize yourself with the amount of consumption it takes to reach it. Nowadays there are even smartphone apps that allow you to estimate your BAC at different points in the course of your drinking.

DO respond as you would if you were stopped for any kind of traffic violation. Get your license and registration ready for the officer’s inspection before he reaches your car.

DO NOT automatically assume that you must answer any question put to you. Your right to say nothing (including answering a question about whether you’ve been drinking) applies here. You may want to say that a lawyer has advised you not to answer any questions without first consulting him or her.

DO be aware that the officer is within his rights to ask you to get out of the vehicle, so if he does, comply.

DO realize that the police are going to be looking for any evidence that you’re over the legal limit for blood-alcohol content. That’s the whole purpose of the traffic stop. If you know that you haven’t consumed enough alcohol to warrant a DWI charge, it’s in your best interest to cooperate fully with any requests, as you may, in fact, pass the sobriety and breathalyzer tests and be released without any citation.

DO NOT assume you are required to submit to a breathalyzer test or a field sobriety test.

DO NOT forget that there may be additional consequences if you refuse any requests. Depending on where you live, whether it’s Austin, TX or somewhere with zero-tolerance laws, you will possibly face suspension of your license or a fine. If you live in an area with a “no-refusal” policy, officers may be able to obtain a warrant on the spot that will require you to take a breathalyzer. DWI lawyers point out that you may then be looking at both a DWI conviction and penalties for refusing the initial request.

But a DWI lawyer might say the most important thing when it comes to avoiding a DWI arrest in Austin, TX, or anywhere is the simplest thing to recall: DO NOT drink and drive.

DWI Lawyer Austin TXIf you’re accused of a DWI, you need a DWI lawyer in Austin, TX who is dedicated to protecting the rights of people. Nichols & Gill, P.C. offers defense of misdemeanor and felony charges in Travis County, Williamson County, Hays County, Bastrop County and Caldwell County.

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