Your Texas driver’s license can be suspended for a number of reasons, most of which relate to your conduct on Texas roads. Out-of-state drivers will face suspension of their Texas driving privileges and notification of the offense to their home state’s Division of Motor Vehicles (or its local equivalent). Whether you are in-state or out of state, however, you are entitled to constitutional due process protections that will allow you to contest the revocation. Texas also offers ways to apply for reinstatement or limited driving privileges.
Grounds for Suspension
In Texas, your driver’s license can be suspended for the following reasons (among others):
- Multiple moving violations
- DWI or DUI (two separate offenses in Texas)
- Refusal to submit to a breath or blood test to determine the presence of intoxicants in your bloodstream
- Medical unfitness to drive (if you are legally blind, for example)
- Causing a traffic accident that causes death, injury or property damage of at least $1,000 with no liability insurance
- Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) will result in suspension of your automobile driving privileges!
- Failure to pay Driver Responsibility surcharges (imposed after road violations such as DWI and multiple moving violations)
- Driving on a suspended driver’s license
- Buying or consuming alcohol, even if you are not driving (for minors under 21 only)
- Drug or substance offenses
- Failing to pay child support
Administrative License Revocation Procedures
You are entitled to a hearing if you request one within 15 days, and you may be represented at the hearing by an attorney. Even if your license is ultimately suspended, an attorney may be able to help you significantly reduce your suspension period. An attorney can also help you handle an appeal of your suspension.
If your driver’s license is suspended at about the same time you are assessed hefty fines and surcharges (as is typical after a DWI conviction, for example), you may find yourself unable to travel to and from work at exactly the time you need to earn money to pay your fines and surcharges. To help resolve this dilemma, Texas offers a temporary occupational license valid for travel to and from work or school or to carry out necessary household functions. You will need to file a written petition with the court in the county where your suspension occurred. Since the court has the discretion to deny your petition, the assistance of a Houston attorney could make a big difference.
Reinstatement of your driver’s license will require you to submit various forms of documentation. You may also have to complete certain classes (such as a Drug Education Class) or present proof of insurance, or pass a driving test, depending on why your license was suspended in the first place. In most cases, you will have to pay a $125 reinstatement fee.
Houston lawyer Mario Madrid enjoys nearly twenty years of practice experience as a defense lawyer, a prosecutor and a judge. He has been certified as a specialist in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and he has been inducted into the National College of DUI Defense Attorneys. If your driver’s license has been suspended in a case arising in the Houston area, call Madrid Law, PLLC at 713-877-9400 for your free initial consultation.