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La Marque DWI Attorney

La Marque, TX DWI Lawyer | Tad Nelson & Associates - FREE CONSULTS!

Arrested for DWI in La Marque? Contact Us Today for a Confidential Consultation 

At The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates, our La Marque DWI defense lawyers are strong and aggressive advocates for justice. With more than three decades of collective courtroom experience and more than 325 trials handled, we have what it takes to get results for our clients. Arrested for a DWI? We are more than ready to help. Contact us today for a completely confidential, no obligation consultation with a top-tier La Marque DWI defense lawyer. 

Know the Law: DWI in Texas

Under Texas law (Texas Penal Code Sec. 49.01), it is unlawful to operate a motor vehicle while unlawfully intoxicated by alcohol or drugs. To obtain a conviction in a DWI cases in La Marque, prosecutors will need to prove the following two things

  1. The defendant was in control of motor vehicle; and
  2. The defendant was intoxicated. 

Note: For most motorists in Texas, the maximum allowable blood alcohol concentration is 0.08. If you are tested at anything higher than that, you are going to want one of the best criminal defense lawyers on your side, so call today! For most motorists in Texas, the maximum allowable blood alcohol concentration is 0.08. 

Our Firm Defends Even the Most Complex of DWI Charges in La Marque, Texas 

The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates is a solutions-oriented criminal defense firm committed to providing the absolute highest quality of legal representation to clients, including people right here in La Marque. No matter the situation that you find yourself, we are more than ready to go the extra mile to get results. DWI charges we take on in La Marque, Texas include: 

  • Underage DWI charges;
  • Commercial DWI charges;
  • Drugged driving charges; 
  • Drunk/drugged driving with a child in the cary; 
  • DWI causing physical injury; 
  • DWI causing serious bodily injury; and
  • DWI manslaughter (serious felony offense). 

Understanding the Penalties that Can Come With DWI Conviction 

Were you arrested and charged with drunk driving in La Marque? It is imperative that you have a full understanding of the potential penalties that could face if you are convicted of the crime. In Texas, a key factor in determining DWI penalties is a person’s prior history of drunk driving offenses, or lack thereof. Here is an overview: 

  • First-Time DWI: A fine of up to $2,000, a sentence of up to 180 days in jail, and a one year suspension of your driver’s license. 
  • Second-Time DWI: A fine of up to $4,000, a sentence of up to 365 days in jail, and a two year suspension of your driver’s license. 
  • Third-Time DWI: A fine of up to $10,000, a sentence of up to 10 years in state prison, and a two year suspension of your driver’s license. 

It should be noted that you could absolutely face even more serious DWI penalties if any aggravated factors are present in your case. For example, imagine that you are arrested for a DWI causing bodily injury in La Marque. You could face a felony charge that carries the risk of significant prison time. With felony DWI charges, you need a top-tier defense attorney on your side.

Your Guide to DWI Testing Laws in Texas

Many DWI criminal cases are brought by prosecutors, at least in part, based on “test” results. It is useful for drivers in La Marque to understand the law regarding DWI tests in Texas. Here is an overview of the key points that you should understand: 

  • Chemical Tests (There is an Implied Consent Law): In Texas, if you are driving, you’ve automatically agreed to chemical tests under the implied consent law. If you refuse to take a post-arrest blood test or breath test, you could lose your license based on a DWI refusal.  
  • Field Sobriety Tests (There is No Implied Consent):  Unlike chemical tests, you are not legally bound to take field sobriety tests in Texas. These tests include activities like walking in a straight line or standing on one leg. Field sobriety tests are often not reliable. 

Arrested for a DWI in La Marque, TX? What to Know About Your Driver’s License

Did you know that you could lose your driving privileges based entirely on a DWI arrest. Texas has an Administrative License Revocation (ALR) program. Under the law, a motorist’s license  can be automatically suspended if you fail or refuse a chemical test—including a breathalyzer test. If you fail the test, showing a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher, your license can be suspended for between 90 days and one year. Refusing to take the test results in a suspension of 180 days to two years. To be clear, you have the right to challenge this suspension—but you must request a hearing within 15 days of your arrest. Our criminal defense attorneys can help. 

The Most Common Strategies to Defend Against a Drunk Driving Charge

How do you defend a DWI charge in La Marque? It is a question without an easy answer. A criminal case should never be defended in a cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all manner. Instead, the defense needs to be narrowly tailored to meet the specific situation. Here is an overview of three of the most common defense strategies in DWI cases in La Marque, Texas: 

  • Illegal Stop: This strategy involves questioning the legality of the initial traffic stop that led to the drunk driving charge. The law requires police officers to have a valid reason, known as “probable cause,” to stop a driver. As an example, imagine that a driver is pulled over for absolutely no reason in La Marque. Any evidence obtained at that illegal stop may not be admissible in court. Without that evidence, that case may simply fall apart and the charges may need to be dismissed outright. 
  • Challenging Intoxication: With this defense, the accuracy of the sobriety tests used by the police is questioned. There are various methods to test for intoxication—such as breathalyzers, blood tests, and field sobriety tests. In far too many cases, these tests can be inaccurate and unreliable. For instance, if a driver in La Marque fails a breathalyzer test, but the machine was not calibrated correctly, those results may not be unreliable.
  • Plea Deal: Finally, it is important to also emphasize that an aggressive defense—while always an option that should be considered—is not the right approach in every DWI case in La Marque. A plea deal is an agreement between the defendant and the prosecutor where the defendant agrees to plead guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for a lighter sentence or other benefits. It is a defense that is often used in cases where the evidence against the defendant is strong and the chances of winning at trial are relatively low. 

Deferred Adjudication and Texas DWI

Texas has recently changed its laws on deferred adjudication, and some DWI defendants are now eligible. With deferred adjudication, a defendant enters a plea and then serves a period of community supervision and other requirements. If the defendant successfully completes all requirements, the charges are dismissed.

Deferred adjudication allows a defendant to avoid a conviction on their record. Texas has changed its laws to make DWI defendants eligible if this is their first DWI, and their BAC is not 0.15 or higher. You are not eligible if you have a prior DWI or if you were very intoxicated.

Deferred adjudication is a good option for some defendants. You will not end up in jail but can continue with school or work. Not having a conviction on your record is also to your benefit when applying for a job. However, your arrest will remain part of your criminal history. That means someone pulling a criminal history report can find out you were arrested for DWI. However, you might submit a petition for Non-Disclosure to seal the arrest record.

Contact us to discuss if deferred adjudication is right for you. It’s not the best option for all defendants but might be the most sensible path to keep you out of jail.

A DWI is Public Information—And Will Come Up Later

Getting arrested for DWI can have immediate negative effects on your life. We have heard of DWIs coming up in the following situations:

  • Job interviews. It’s routine for many employers to pull a criminal history before interviewing a job applicant. They will see a DWI arrest and/or conviction on your history, and you can expect them to ask questions about it. A DWI might immediately prevent you from getting a job in the transportation industry or working with vulnerable adults or children.
  • Apartment applications. Landlords also routinely pull background checks for the same reason an employer does. A DWI makes you look like a risk, and most landlords want to avoid any tenant who could create problems. A DWI tells a landlord you aren’t above breaking the law. A drugged driving conviction is even worse, since they will assume you possess illegal drugs in the apartment.
  • College admission interviews. A college is interested in any alcohol-related crime, including DWI and open container violations. You might be a risk for hurting another student if they let you in.
  • Professional license credentials. Many professionals are regulated by professional boards, including lawyers, doctors, and teachers. A DWI could result in suspension of your professional license or other disciplinary action.
  • Job loss. You might be unable to go into work as you complete your sentence. Employers are not required to hold a job open for you so you can pay your debt back to society. Further, Texas is an “at will” state, and an employer could simply fire you for a DWI arrest.
  • Divorce and child custody proceedings. A DWI makes you look like a danger to children, so you could lose a custody fight. You should do everything possible to get charges dismissed and address any drug or alcohol problems.

Moving on from any criminal charge is difficult. You deserve an aggressive defense as soon as you are arrested or charged. Our firm can also discuss options for expunction, which will erase a criminal record, or an Order of Non-Disclosure, which seals you criminal records.

Will You Lose Civil Rights for a La Marque DWI?

Texas strips certain criminals of civil rights, including:

  • Voting rights. Convicted felons cannot vote while they are completing their sentences. You will automatically get your voting rights back, but only once you have served your time.
  • Jury duty. Convicted felons lose the right to serve on a jury.
  • Public office. You cannot run for public office as a convicted felon unless you receive a pardon.
  • Gun rights. A felony conviction can lead to a parament ban on legally owning a firearm. Even a misdemeanor could create problems. Anyone convicted of a Class A or B misdemeanor will need to wait a minimum of 5 years before they can apply for a handgun license in Texas. Someone convicted of a drugged driving charge could be permanently prohibited from obtaining a license.

We strongly encourage all defendants to carefully consider the effects of a DWI conviction. Jail time and fines are only the start of the analysis. A conviction for even a first-time DWI can permanently alter your life. Meet with an experienced La Marque, TX DWI defense lawyer to review legal options for fighting these charges.

Why Our La Marque DWI Defense Attorney is the Best Option for Your Case

Were you or your loved one arrested for a DWI in La Marque or elsewhere in Galveston County? It is imperative that you take immediate action to protect your rights. Your license and your freedom could be at stake. At The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates, we are committed to providing top-tier criminal defense representation. Our firm has extensive experience handling DWI cases. Indeed, we have specialized expertise in these cases. When you contact us, you will have an opportunity to connect with a La Marque DWI defense attorney who is: 

  • ACS/CHAL Forensic Lawyer: We have a La Marque DWI defense lawyer who holds the prestigious certification from the American Chemical Society. It is a recognition that  signifies advanced knowledge in the science behind DWI charges—particularly in blood alcohol testing. Our firm brings unusual forensic expertise to the table. 
  • Certified SFST Instructor: Our La Marque DWI defense attorney is also a Certified Instructor in Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFST). We have a comprehensive understanding of field sobriety testing in Texas—including how they are supposed to be conducted and how they can be challenged in court. 
  • Chromatograph Training: Our La Marque DWI defense lawyer has extensive experience and specialized training in the use of chromatography. It is an area of size that is crucial for blood alcohol content analysis. Our knowledge allows for detailed scrutiny of blood test results. We use our expertise to get better results for our clients in DWI cases. 
  • Committed to Personalized Representation: With considerable experience, we know that one-size-fits-all solutions are not good enough for DWI cases. Our La Marque, TX DWI defense lawyer is committed to giving each case individual attention. A customized defense can lead to far more favorable outcomes in drunk driving and drugged driving charges. 
  • Founded By a Former Prosecutor: Our founding attorney Tad A. Nelson is a former State prosecutor in Texas. It is a unique background experience that provides unique insights into how the prosecution approaches DWI cases. We know how to anticipate and counter the tactics and strategies used by police and prosecutors. 

5 Reasons to Call Us Immediately

DWI defendants benefit from the services of a seasoned DWI defense attorney in their corner. Don’t wait. Here are five benefits to calling us today:

  1. Avoid handing incriminating evidence to the police. Most DWI cases hinge on test results and an officer’s observations of your driving ability. But some defendants make things harder for themselves. For example, you might admit to doing drugs or drinking before driving, and the state will introduce these statements against you at trial. An attorney can help you avoid saying anything incriminating.
  2. Get help at your arraignment and bond. We can go with you to your arraignment where you will enter your plea. Never plead guilty without first talking with our law firm. We can also help with getting a bond for your release.
  3. Find relevant evidence. Our lawyers are adept at uncovering evidence that helps our clients. Other lawyers simply wait for the police to hand over a folder or zip drive of evidence, but we roll up our sleeves and find evidence before it disappears.
  4. Keep your license. Our firm can request an Administrative License Revocation Hearing and attend one on your behalf to dispute the suspension or revocation of your license.
  5. Challenge the state’s evidence. Our firm knows how to use pretrial motion practice to set up our defense. It’s possible to win some cases at this stage or at least force the prosecution into a plea deal. For example, we might convince a judge to kick out evidence due to an unconstitutional and illegal stop.

Let us explain in more detail how we have helped our clients. It’s never too late to get the legal help you need—but the sooner you call us, the more flexibility we have in defending you from DWI charges.

La Marque DWI Frequently Asked Questions

We hear regularly from members of the community who have questions about the DWI process. We are happy to provide accurate, timely information about La Marque criminal cases. Here are some of the most common questions.

Does my child need a DWI lawyer as a juvenile?

Yes. Underage defendants can face many of the same harsh penalties as adults. Young people also need to think about common repercussions from a conviction, like difficulty establishing themselves in a job. Tad Nelson and his team have deep experience helping juvenile defendants. Give us a call to speak with our La Marque, TX DWI lawyers.

My cousin avoided jail after his DWI; why am I facing time behind bars?

Each case is different. Your criminal history, including prior DWIs, will greatly impact the amount of time you face in jail. For example, many first-time offenders are eligible for deferred adjudication. If this is your second DWI, or if you had a very high BAC, then you aren’t eligible for that option. One of the great benefits of meeting with a lawyer is finding out what penalties you face, based on the circumstances.

Why am I facing intoxication assault charges if I didn’t hit anyone?

Under Texas Penal Code Section 49.07, you can face Intoxication Assault charges if you are driving drunk and someone suffers a bodily injury that is serious. For example, a passenger in your car could be hurt when you crash the vehicle. Although you didn’t hit a bystander, you did injure someone.

Will my car insurance go up if I have a DWI?

Yes. The average driver in Texas sees a 50% spike in their insurance premiums after a DWI. The effect will decrease over time, but you can expect to pay thousands more in car insurance after a conviction. With insurance rates skyrocketing for all drivers, this additional expense is most unwelcome.

What is an ignition interlock device?

This is a device which you install on a car. It’s like a portable breathalyzer. A motorist needs to blow into the device, which measures the alcohol content in their breath. If the alcohol content is too high, then the car won’t start. You will likely need to install this device on any vehicle you drive, at your own expense. An IID is also necessary after a conviction.

Does an out-of-state DWI count as a prior?

Usually. Section 49.09 of the Texas Penal Code counts as a prior offense a conviction under another state’s drunk driving laws. Please share with your attorney your entire criminal history, because it could easily become relevant in your DWI case.

Get Help From Our La Marque DWI Defense Lawyer Today 

At The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates, our La Marque drunk driving defense attorneys fight aggressively for justice. Facing any type of DWI charge? We are more than ready to get started on your case. Give us a phone call now or contact us online to set up your fully confidential initial case review. We defend DWI charges in La Marque, Galveston County, and throughout Southeast Texas.