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HOUSTON DUI ACCIDENT LAWYER
Drunk driving or driving under the influence (DUI) is the leading cause of motor vehicle accidents in the United States of America. Additionally, it’s the leading cause of both minor and serious injuries and fatalities on the road. In 2020, 11,654 people died due to alcohol impairment while driving.
It’s also worth noting that 26% of all those crashes involving 25-to-34 years old drunk drivers with their blood alcohol content as the basis for the data. Additionally, 68% of road crashes are happening at night when there is low visibility on roads.
If there was an involvement between you or your family member in an accident with a drunk driver, you have to fight for your right. Drunk driving is a type of accident that can be 100% avoidable if the at-fault party was more responsible. Due to their negligence, you and someone you love would be suffering from the accident’s effect for years to come.
To help you attain justice, you should hire the best Houston DUI accident lawyer. At Roxell Richards Injury Law Firm, you are our number 1 priority, and bringing the at-fault party to justice is how we take care of you.
WHY YOU SHOULD HIRE A HOUSTON DUI ACCIDENT LAWYER?
Going through the experience of a ride-share accident is indeed a traumatic event. Aside from dealing with the trauma, you need to face realities such as physically recovering from any injuries or afflictions from the crash. Additionally, you also have to deal with real-world problems. Such as paying for the bills that are stacking up–whether it’s for your medical treatments or car repairs.
In reality, not everyone has enough money to be able to deal with the effects of a DUI accident without processing their claims with their insurance company. Another sad fact of the reality is that dealing with insurance companies can be a burden, as well. The process of reimbursing victims for their losses with your insurance can be tedious with complications.
A great help with all these complications is hiring a good DUI accident attorney with professional experience. You may think you don’t need one because you don’t expect to go to court. But representing you in court is not the only thing a ride-share accident attorney can do for you.
One of the major actions your auto accident attorney can do is negotiate with the insurance company. Whether it’s having discussions with your or the other driver’s insurance company, having someone knowledgeable about the DUI accident law can help you get the right compensation for you. Additionally, having someone you can rely on to discuss legal matters lessens the pressure and anxiety of having to deal with matters you are not familiar with.
Of course, as an attorney, he or she can represent you in court, should your DUI accident case escalate to that. But, before that even happens, it’s better that you already hire an auto accident lawyer to help you with paperwork, negotiations, and court appearances.
Can A DUI be dismissed?
Yes, in Texas a dismissal of your DUI or DWI can be done. Just like with any charges, you have the right to question your charges and including their removal. But only if you can provide evidence that contradicts the charges.
You would need the help of a good Houston DUI accident lawyer to help you navigate through the complications of dismissing your DUI and DWI charges. Remember that the way to dismiss a DUI or DWI is by challenging the evidence against you. With that, you need an expert in law to guide and represent you.
First of all, a dismissal of a DUI or DWI is not easy or by sheer luck only. If this is not your first offense, it would be more difficult due to your priors. In challenging the evidence, you will also be challenging the police officers and the witnesses presenting evidence against you.
The first step is to bring your DUI accident police report to your DUI accident lawyer. The police report contains all the details that you would have to challenge. That includes any information on your field sobriety tests and witness statements.
One of the ways to dismiss a DUI is by presenting that the charge is invalid. If you can invalidate the arrest, then all the inclusive details in it are also invalidated. That goes for any evidence that was acquired.
Can you join the military with a DUI?
The simple answer is no. You cannot join the military with a DUI or DWI charge. Any of the military branches do not allow persons with DUI convictions to sign up.
Signing up for the military, a background check will be done. Checking of your records including any charges you were given prior to your sign-up. Checking even your traffic violations and tickets.
A DUI or DWI is considered a misdemeanor. If you have charges for manslaughter, resulting from a wrongful death in car accidents, or any other criminal convictions in relation to your DUI accident, they will not allow you to join the military.
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Is DUI a Traffic Violation?
Getting a drunk driving citation is more than a traffic violation. Depending on your age and which state you were in, drunk driving can get you different citations. In Texas, if you were caught driving on the road while under the influence of alcohol, you can get a:
- Driving Under the Influence (DUI) – if you are under the legal drinking age of 21 years old.
- Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) – if you are 21 years old and above.
Getting a DUI citation is considerably a Class C misdemeanor in the state of Texas. You could get a fine of $500 with a 30-180 day license suspension. On top of that, they may require you to take on 8 to 40 hours of community service.
Meanwhile, with a DWI charge, you would get a class B misdemeanor. Depending on your offense, you could get a fine from $2,000 to $10,000. You can also be in jail from 3 mandatory days to ten years. Check out the penalties for getting a DWI:
On your first offense with a DWI charge, you will have three mandatory days up to 180 days in jail. You could also get a fine of $2,000 and will lose your driving privileges for up to one year. This means a suspension of your driver’s license for a year.
If it’s your second DWI offense, your fine will increase to $4,000. You can also get from one month to one year of jail time upon your conviction. Also, a suspension of your driver’s license for up to two years.
On your third offense, you get a $10,000 fine. You can also get imprisonment from two to ten years. You also lose your driving privileges for two years with the suspension of your driver’s license.
In both cases, a DUI or a DWI, you must take mandatory alcohol-awareness classes. These classes will reiterate the dangers of drunk driving. It will also provide you with knowledge of the best practices of driving and road safety etiquette.
Additionally, if you were driving with a child as a passenger, they can charge you with a separate offense. And that offense would be child endangerment. You can get additional penalties and jail time on top of your DWI charges.
How long does a DUI police report take?
Filing of police reports is mostly within three to five business days of the accident. There are times when it takes longer due to some factors such as incomplete statements from the parties involved.
This happens when one or more parties that need to provide their statements on the accident do not have the capability to provide them. For example, Rushing one or more parties to the hospital would need time and medical procedures to be done. Getting into a stable medical condition takes precedence over the completion of the police report.
Why is a DUI police report important?
A police report is an official report on the chronological events of an accident. It provides details such as the people involved in the accident, what cars, and what were the state of events based on statements from different people. The report pieces together the exact events and in Texas, as an at-fault state, it also determines who is liable and responsible for the accident.
It also includes your statement and other people’s recollection of the events. Aside from the other party’s statement, it may include any third-party witnesses who were present during the accident.
Upon completion of the police report, a police officer can add their professional opinion and any other types of charges such as DUIs and DWIs. A police report would be the main document for any insurance claims in relation to the drunk driving accident.
Can you be charged with DUI days later?
Yes, you can be charged with a DUI or DWI after the fact. If a police officer was not able to charge you with a DUI or DWI when they responded to the accident, they can still charge you if it was clear that you were intoxicated.
For example, after the accident, you were swiftly rushed to emergency medical services. Since you are being tended to, the police officer won’t be able to charge you. If during your stay in the ER, it showed that your blood alcohol content was 0.08 grams per deciliter or more, then a police officer can still charge you with a DUI or DWI.
Another possibility of being charged with DWI or DUI after the fact is when there is photographic or video evidence that shows your state during the time of the accident. Witnesses could also attest to your state of inebriation which could lead to a DUI charge in the next few days.
Additionally, if the police officer also catches evidence in your car such as an open bottle, then you can be charged with a DWI or DUI. If your car was wrecked and needed to be towed, it may take time for the police officer to find the bottle in your car. This could account for the late DUI or DWI charges against you.
The Texas statute of limitations for a DWI or DUI arrest is three years. During that time, the police officers may indict you for drunk driving.
Do DUI blood tests check for drugs?
Yes, checking your blood sample can check for substances such as alcohol and drugs. A DUI or DWI blood test can measure the alcohol content in your bloodstream. It can also check all the different types of chemicals present, hence it can detect illegal substances as well.
With blood tests, time to analyze it is crucial. If the exposure of the blood was far too long, the alcohol levels can turn into a false reading. With the number of blood tests that the lab needs to process, these can be a problem. The preservation of a blood sample is very crucial to ensure that it will provide accurate results.
Police officers catch drunk drivers from how drivers maneuver through the roads. Drunk drivers have telltale signs since they do not have 100% control of their faculties. Here are some signs that a driver is intoxicated on the road:
- Swerving or making wild, sudden turns
- Inconsistent speed (slowing down and speeding up randomly)
- Suddenly hitting the brakes
- Forgetting to turn on their headlights
- Not signaling when turning
- Not following any stop signs or traffic lights
If these behaviors were present even before the occurrence of the accident, the police officer would conduct further tests to verify if the driver was drunk.
Law enforcement would often start with field sobriety tests such as observing a person’s appearance and movements. Asking the driver to walk straight or any activities that would show that the person is in control of his body are some examples of these tests. Additionally, the police officer can check your car for any evidence that you may have been drinking such as alcohol bottles or physical evidence of illegal substances.
They would also use a breathalyzer or alcohol breath analyzer to measure your blood alcohol content. Should you have a result of 6.8 or higher, then you are considered intoxicated.
Since the breath analysis is not as accurate as a blood test, once they are charging you with a DUI or DWI, police officers may ask to conduct further tests such as blood and urine tests.
When it comes to a urine test, can also detect both alcohol and other substances in your body. Although, urine test results are considered less accurate than blood test results.
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TOP QUESTIONS |DUI ACCIDENTS
Can you get deported for DUI?
Yes, a DUI or DWI could deport you if you are not yet a permanent resident of Texas, USA. Misdemeanors and charges could lead to deportation. If you are either illegally living in the US or still waiting for the processing of your immigration status.
Considerably, since drunk driving is a crime of moral turpitude, they can use your DUI or DWI on your record to deny your application for permanent residence or citizenship in the US.
What to do when you're in a drunk-driving car accident in Houston?
As always, we recommend that when you are in a motor vehicle accident get yourself and others medical help first. Call emergency services so that first responders can implement first aid if in need.
Also, if you think that the at-fault party was intoxicated, here are some extra steps you need to do:
- Document how the driver was behaving. Does he show any signs of intoxication? Take note of any instances such as swaying or stumbling, slurred speech, bloodshot or red eyes, and smelling of alcohol.
- If you have suspicions that the at-fault driver is intoxicated, make sure that you call the police or law enforcement. Officers can verify the state of the driver by conducting field sobriety tests.
- Get the contact numbers of any witnesses to the motor vehicle accidents. You will need their help in confirming the exact series of events. It’s also a good way to corroborate your observations as to the state of the at-fault driver.
And then, once you are safe and medically recovered, it’s best to start discussing your accident with a car accident attorney. Your drunk driving accident attorney can help you discuss the first steps in taking legal action against the at-fault driver.
Why do you need an auto accident attorney for a DUI accident?
Getting an auto accident attorney is not simply to press charges against the drunk at-fault driver. You don’t have to press charges against them if you would rather not.
However, an auto accident lawyer can help you deal with the nuances of your insurance claim. Similar to any accident claims, insurance companies would use tactics to lowball. Or even lessen compensation for your accident–even when a drunk driving accident is as clear as day.
But, if you do want to press charges, you would need representation. Getting an auto accident lawyer can help you with that. If not to help you with the actual representation, they can offer advice or refer you to good criminal lawyers that handle these types of cases.
Fees for Houston DUI accident lawyer services?
Not all DUI accident lawyers charge the same. It all depends on the law firm’s payment policies. Some lawyers would require upfront fees or retainers for when your claims and case are ongoing.
And this is one of the main reasons why people in car accidents prefer not to get help from law firms. Before they could even pay for their medical bills and property damages. They have to pay expensive fees to get help in processing their claims.
But what ends up happening is that the car accident victims end up settling for lowball amounts. And these amounts barely cover their medical expenses. The worst of it all is that they drop any claims and just try to finance their expenses as best as they can. In some cases, they end up being in debt because of the accident–potentially ruining their lives.
Also, at Roxell Richards Injury Law Firm, we operate with compassion as our priority. Our mission is to ensure that all of our clients get the justice and financial support that is due to them. It’s not about getting a high settlement amount for the sake of it. It’s about ensuring that our clients can continue to live their lives as best as they could after the accident.
With that in mind, when you hire a Houston DUI accident lawyer from Roxell Richards Law Firm, you don’t have to pay upfront for their legal fees. Instead, we accept payment on a contingency basis. This means a deduction of our legal fees from the settlement amount that you will receive.
What’s the advantage? First of all, you don’t have to worry about extra expenses on top of your current ones. Next, you’re more confident that our DUI accident lawyers will do everything in our capacity to win your case.
Nonetheless, our goal is to get you the settlement amount you deserve. Your settlement amount should cover your current and future medical bills (in relation to the DUI accident injuries), repairs for your property damages, pain and suffering, and lost wages.
In fact, you may think that if that’s the case, then the legal fees might just be too expensive that you get nothing from the settlement at all. Well, we assure you that the legal fees will only be a portion of your settlement amount. This ensures that you will have the necessary funds to be able to move on from your accident.
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