(512) 476-4626

Texas does not discriminate between intoxication charges due to illegal drugs and prescription drugs. The bottom line under Texas law is that, if you are under the influence of any amount of drugs which has negatively impacted your driving, then you may be liable for a DWI charge.

In reality, however, there are certain limiting factors which may play a strong part in defending you against a DWI charge. We’ll go over some of those factors, including the presence of a prescription, in the following article.

Austin Prescription DWI Lawyer

If you’ve been charged with driving while intoxicated, it is highly recommended that you contact the Law Office of Kevin Bennet. Failing to secure accurate representation may result in suspension or loss of your driver’s license, as well as additional fines and possible jail time.

Bennett will work tirelessly to ensure that your case is thoroughly prepared. He prides himself on providing the best possible defense for each client, and he will focus his time and energy on building a case that will give you the best chance at receiving the most favorable outcome.

Contact Kevin Bennett today at (512) 476-4626 to schedule a free consultation about your DUI charges in Travis County.

Information Center

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What Does Texas Law Say About DWIs?

Texas Penal Code Section 49.04 defines Driving While Intoxicated as the following:

  • “Alcohol concentration” means the number of grams of alcohol per:
    • 210 liters of breath;
    • 100 milliliters of blood;  or
    • 67 milliliters of urine.
  • “Intoxicated” means:
    • not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body;  or
    • having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more.

As indicated in the above definition, intoxication extends to drug use, including prescription drugs. The reasons for this are as follows:

  • The initial purpose of DWI/DUI laws are to prevent drivers and others from unsafe conditions due to drivers losing the ability to think and make decisions clearly. Regardless of whether or not the medicine is prescription, a driver that is making dangerous decisions (driving too slow or fast, swerving, drifting) poses a danger to themselves and others.
  • All prescription drugs include a clause warning users not to drive after taking the medicine

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Related Charges

In addition to a simple flying while intoxicated charge, the following circumstances may result in additional charges:

  • Death: If, as a result of flying while intoxicated, you caused the death of another person, then the court will likely charge you with Intoxication Manslaughter
  • Assault: If you crash the plane or otherwise cause serious bodily injury to another person, then you will likely be charged with intoxication assault.
  • Repeat Offenses: Repeat offenses carry much stronger weight with each subsequent offense.

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Penalties for Prescription DWI/DUI

Conviction Offense Level Maximum Fine Incarceration Time License Suspension
1st DWI Class B Misdemeanor Up to $2,000 72 Hours – 180 Days 90 – 365 Days
2nd DWI Class A Misdemeanor Up to $4,000 30 – 365 Days 180 Days to 2 Years
3rd DWI 3rd Degree Felony Up to $10,000 2 – 10 Years in Prison 180 Days to 2 Years
3rd DWI with one prior conviction 2nd Degree Felony Up to $10,000 2 – 20 Years in Prison Up to 2 Years
3rd DWI with two prior convictions Enhanced Felony Up to $10,000 25 Years – Life Imprisonment Up to 2 Years

Defenses for Prescription DWI Cases

The differences between regular and prescription drug DWIs lie primarily with the possible defense options, including intent.

Generally speaking, knowledge that a drug may impair your ability to operate a motor vehicle is a critical element in a DWI case. If you know that driving after taking a pain reliever or other prescription medication is not recommended or prohibited, then you may be held liable during a traffic stop. A defense lawyer may therefore look to prove that you did not and could not have knowledge that taking your medication would impair your driving.

Other defenses for general DWIs, including challenging drug testing and the underlying reason behind the initial traffic stop, still apply in prescription DWI cases.

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Hire a Prescription DWI Lawyer in Austin, Texas

If you or a loved one have been charged with a DWI after taking prescription medication, call the Law Office of Kevin Bennett today. Kevin Bennett is an expert in DWI cases, including prescription drug DWI cases.

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