DWI Surcharges and High BAC

Houston and Galveston Drunk Driving Defense Attorneys

Under legislation passed in 2003, even a first-time DWI conviction is punished by steep annual “surcharges” for three years. These high fees are doubled if your blood-alcohol content (BAC) was .16 or greater, meaning that you could pay as much as $6,000 on top of all the other associated costs.

DWI surcharges are just one reason why you should fight a conviction for driving while intoxicated. The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates provides proven DWI defense in Galveston County, Harris County and neighboring counties of Texas.

Contact our attorneys immediately if you are accused of drunk driving. You can reach us at 281-280-0100 to arrange a consultation, including nights and weekends.

Texas DWI Surcharges and High-BAC Offenses

Under the Driver Responsibility Act, Texas tacks on exorbitant fees for a conviction for driving while intoxicated:

  • On a first DWI, you must pay an administrative surcharge of $1,000 a year for three years to retain your driver’s license.
  • For a second offense, the fee is $1,500 a year for three years.
  • If your BAC registered .16 or higher (even on a first offense), the surcharge is $2,000 a year for three years.

The DWI surcharge is in addition to fines, court fees, probation fees, license reinstatement fees and all other penalties. Failure to pay the annual surcharges can result in administrative license suspension until the outstanding amount is paid to the Department of Public Safety.

Aggressive Defense for Any DWI Arrest

Board-certified* trial lawyer Tad Nelson and his associate attorneys are skilled at avoiding DWI convictions and the corresponding surcharges, through dismissal of charges, negotiated pleas or taking cases to trial. They are familiar with the differing options and defense strategies for a Galveston County DWI versus a Houston/Harris County DWI.

We understand that surcharges for a DWI are a serious financial hardship for many families, and that losing your driving privileges will only makes matters worse. Call our League City law office at 281-280-0100 for proven representation and information about Texas drunk driving penalties and fines.

* Tad Nelson has been certified in criminal law since 1995 by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. The Board certifies attorneys in 20 specific areas of law; certification in any of these areas requires substantial demonstrated experience and skill, positive peer evaluations, ongoing legal education commitments, and the passage of a rigorous test.