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What Happens if I Had My Child in the Car and I Am Arrested for DWI?

 Posted on August 30, 2023 in Criminal Defense

McKinney Criminal LawyerYou may be feeling sick to your stomach if you are facing charges for driving while intoxicated (DWI) with a child passenger. The legal consequences are severe because this could lead to child endangerment charges which could affect your rights as a parent. If you have been arrested for DWI with a child in the car, a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney can help.

What are the Penalties for Driving Drunk with a Child Passenger?

Under state law, a child does not have to be injured for you to be charged with DWI with a child passenger. In Texas, anyone who drives while intoxicated with a child under the age of 15 is breaking the law. Intoxicated means that the driver had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher. Here are potential penalties you may face:

  • Because driving while intoxicated with a child passenger is a felony, a conviction could result in jail time anywhere from six months to two years. 

  • You may also face fines of up to $10,000 and have to complete up to 1,000 hours of community service.

  • You stand to lose your driver’s license for six months and may have to participate in a drunk driving education program.

  • You will be ordered by the court to install an ignition interlock device on your car.

  • Depending on the circumstances, if you have a child custody agreement, your parental rights could be affected.

Why Are The Consequences So Harsh?

The courts want to keep children safe. That is why when there is a situation in which a child might have been in danger, Child Protective Services may perform an investigation. If you have done something that could have harmed a child, you could be accused of child endangerment. There is not much leniency for a drunk driver if police find children in the car at the time of the arrest. When someone is drunk and driving, they might not make sure the kids are wearing seat belts, which makes the situation even more dangerous.

Contact a Frisco DWI Attorney

A conviction for DWI with a child passenger can lead to big legal trouble. You are not just facing criminal charges, but potentially child endangerment charges as well. With this in mind, it is very important that you work with an experienced Allen DWI lawyer. Call 469-333-3333 for a free consultation.

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