An individual who receives a charge of a DUI in Texas may be subject to different sets of punishments depending on the circumstance. A Texas DUI is more serious if there is a child under the age of 15 in the car at the time that the driver is arrested.
If an individual is charged with a first Texas DUI, then they may serve a jail term from three to 180 days. If a child under the age of 15 is the car at the time, the individual may spend 180 days to two years in jail.
A Texas DUI charge will result in one's license being suspended for three months to one year. The driver may have to pay fines of up to $2000. If a child under the age of 15 is in the vehicle at the time, the individual may have to pay fines of up to $10,000. All penalties involving a child under the age of 15 are the same for any charge of a DUI in Texas.
The second Texas DUI carries a possible penalty of 30 days to one year in jail. There is a fine of up to $4,000. An individual may have their license suspended for a time period of six month to one year.
A driver may also be legally required to use an ignition interlock device before driving, which is a breathalyzer test that is installed in a car and must be used before the car will start. The same rules apply for an individual who is charged with a third Texas DUI, except the jail term ranges from two to ten years and the fine is up to $10,000.
Any DUI in Texas may also carry the additional penalty of a DWI surcharge. A DWI surcharge is a fine that is paid yearly in addition to the other punishments when one is charged with a Texas DUI. The first time one receives a charge of a DUI in Texas, the charge is $1,000 per year. The second time one receives a Texas DUI, the surcharge is $1500 per year. If there is a child under the age of 15 in the vehicle, then the driver who is charged with a Texas DUI must pay $2,000 per year no matter what offense it is.
While the time for license suspension is fairly standard in Texas, a Texas DUI does carry additional harsh penalties if a child under the age of 15 is in the car.