DWI Probation in Texas

Every person charged with DWI in Texas is eligible to submit an application for Community Supervision. Commonly referred to as probation, Community Supervision is an opportunity to avoid incarceration as punishment for DWI.

Texas has severe DWI consequences. Everyone charged with DWI, even a first offense, faces jail time. Community Supervision is a safe and preferable alternative to the nightmare that is incarceration. Learn more about Texas DWI consequences.

  • What is DWI probation?

    Probation is a contract between a defendant and the court. Probation is granted when a defendant is sentenced to a period of time in jail or prison, and a judge or jury decides to probate the sentence. This means that the defendant serves the punishment period through community supervision, instead of incarceration.
  • What are the requirements for DWI probation?

    DWI probation requirements vary, however, court-ordered classes, random drug testing, reporting, continued employment or school enrollment, community service, alcohol monitoring device(s), and the payment of fines, court costs, and supervisory fees form the core of probation terms and conditions in Texas. Learn more.

How to get DWI Probation

There are only two ways for a defendant to receive probation for DWI in Texas. A judge has the power to grant probation when assessing punishment as part of a plea agreement, or after a defendant has been found guilty at trial. A jury also has the power to grant probation after finding a defendant guilty at trial. 

  • Is it possible to get probation for DUI in Texas? Yes. Unlike DWI, a minor under 21 years of age cannot be sentenced to jail for DUI. However, it is critical to avoid a conviction for DUI at all costs. Learn more. 
  • Can you get probation for a 3rd DWI in Texas? Yes. Every person charged with DWI in Texas is eligible to submit an application for Community Supervision. Even after losing a trial, a defendant may still receive probation instead of being sentenced to jail. Learn more about Texas DWI consequences.

How Long is DWI Probation?

The maximum length of community supervision in Texas for a Misdemeanor DWI is 24 months, and for a DWI 3rd+ is 10 years. 

  • What factors determine the length of probation? Many factors determine the term of a probation, including, blood alcohol concentration, criminal history, whether there was an accident, injury, or property damage, attitude with law enforcement, driving facts, policies of the prosecuting office, and the temperament of the judge assigned to the case.However, the single most important factor in the outcome of any DWI case is choosing the right lawyer for representation. The experience and determination of a DWI lawyer directly impacts the result.
  • Can you get off probation early for a DWI in Texas? No. It is not possible to early terminate a DWI probation in Texas. Learn more.

Straight Probation vs Deferred Adjudication

The difference between straight probation and deferred adjudication is that straight probation starts with a permanent conviction. Because the conviction is final, the primary benefit of receiving straight probation is avoiding incarceration.

Deferred adjudication is better than straight probation. Deferred adjudication begins with no conviction, and a guaranteed pathway to dismissal. If all terms and conditions are met by the end of a deferred term, the charge is dismissed. In many cases, the charge can later be sealed through a petition for non-disclosure. Learn more about DWI deferred adjudication in Texas here.

What Happens with DWI Probation Violations?

Probation violations, even minor, can result in the State filing a Motion to Revoke Probation (MTR). MTR’s result in arrest warrants, potential incarceration, and can wreck a criminal record. 

  • Can you drink on DWI probation Texas? No. Alcohol consumption is prohibited while on community supervision in Texas. Even for adults over 21 years old. Learn more.
  • Is drug testing a requirement for DWI probation? Drug testing is a requirement while on community supervision in Texas. The frequency is determined by the court and the supervision officer. Failure can result in an MTR.

Bexar County Probation Resources

The Bexar County Adult Probation Department is charged with the supervision of more than 30,000 Bexar County residents. Common probation questions include: 

Trey Porter Named Best DWI Lawyer in San Antonio

Mr. Porter has been voted by his peers as one of San Antonio’s Best Lawyers every year since 2015, with specific recognition in the fields of Criminal Defense and DWI Defense. Mr. Porter is also recognized by the National Trial Lawyers Association as a Top 40 Under 40 Criminal Defense Lawyer, and holds a 10.0 Superb rating from AVVO, where attorneys are rated based on skillful litigation, client satisfaction, peer endorsements, and positive results. Learn more.

DWI Probation in Texas

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    Successful Cases

    CHARGES DISMISSED

    DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED .15

    Driving facts involved failing to maintain a single lane and speeding. Client refused breath test and forced law enforcement to obtain search warrant for blood. Blood test result was not used after challenge from Defense, and State waived and abandoned charge.

    CHARGES DISMISSED

    DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

    Client was a college student, worried about the collateral consequences of an alcohol offense. After negotiation and review of the traffic stop, the case was dismissed. Client received no criminal conviction. The charge was later expunged and deleted from client’s record.

    CHARGES DISMISSED

    DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED .15+

    Client was involved in minor accident. Client was at fault in accident. A young executive, client was concerned that a criminal conviction for DWI would result in termination. After review of the traffic stop, it was clear the officer lacked probable cause for arrest. State eventually dismissed DWI charge. Client received no criminal conviction.

    CHARGES DISMISSED

    DWI 2nd

    Client, a military veteran, was facing up to one year in jail. State could not prove intoxication by alcohol, and was prepared to proceed on loss of use by marijuana. After challenging the State to prove that marijuana was ingested at or near time of driving, and that marijuana impaired client’s driving, the State dismissed the case on the day of trial.

    CHARGES DISMISSED

    DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

    Driving facts involved a false claim by police that taillight was out. After challenging the reasonable suspicion for the traffic stop, the State was forced to dismiss the case when video did not match police report. Client has since expunged arrest, and has no criminal record.

    CHARGES DISMISSED

    DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

    Client is a public school teacher and faced immediate termination upon conviction. The facts of the case were bad. State was unwilling to budge in negotiation, and matter was set for trial – the last shot at avoiding a conviction and preserving client’s livelihood. State was forced to dismiss on day of trial. Client has no criminal record, and has since expunged the DWI arrest.

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