What is the Difference Between DUI & DWI?

DUI is an acronym for driving under the influence, while DWI stands for driving while intoxicated or impaired. However, in some states they mean the same thing, while each one is a separate charge in other states.

In Texas, the difference is a matter of age. If you are 21 years of age or older and you get pulled over after drinking and driving, you can be charged with a Texas DWI if you have a BAC level over .08. If you are under 21 years old and you get pulled over for drinking and driving, you can be charged with a Texas DUI if there is any detectable amount of alcohol in your system. Texas has a “zero-tolerance” law for drivers below the legal drinking age.

A first offense Texas DWI is punishable by the following penalties:

  • Jail sentence between three days and 180 days
  • Maximum fine of $2,000
  • License suspension for up to two years
  • Possible ignition interlock device installation

A first offense Texas DUI is punishable by the following penalties:

  • Maximum fine of $500
  • License suspension of up to one year
  • Enroll in an alcohol education program

If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI or DWI in Bryan or College Station, TX, schedule a free consultation with The Law Office of Shane Phelps, P.C. today. With more 30 years of legal experience that includes time as a former prosecutor, having our attorney on your side can make a significant difference in your case.

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