How Long Does a DWI Stay on Your Record?

Attorney Eric Torberson

How Long Does a DWI Stay on Your Record In Texas?

The short answer is forever. But I need to elaborate. The question should be more specific and ask “DWI Conviction” rather than “DWI”. A dwi conviction stays forever. A dwi conviction takes place by two ways. The first way is a plea of guilty prior to trial, where the defendant with or without an attorney, signs paperwork. Then next stands in front of a judge an pleads guilty to driving while intoxicated. The second way is to be found guilty in a trial by judge or jury.

Sometimes a person is only arrested for DWI and later that accusation is dismissed.  Or the defendant pleads guilty to another charge. As far as the dismissal is concerned there will be a right to expunge the arrest. It will just be a matter of if there is a waiting period. The second situation with pleading to another or reduced charge, it will probably not be expungeable unless it was plead to a Class C ticket with a deferred disposition.

Texas used to have a 10 years period where a dwi 10 years or more old could not be used to enhance a current dwi charge. That law was removed several years ago. So any dwi conviction, no matter how old, can be used to enhance the current dwi to a more serious penalty. It is more important than ever to fight and keep a driving while intoxicated off of your record. This means skill and preparation by your attorney. That takes a dedicated lawyer who keeps up to date on his practice and knowledge. There are many times ways to fight DWI cases even when it seems impossible. Call Eric Torberson for answers and avoid having to do this described procedure if at all possible.

Texas Dwi Non Disclosure

On September 1, 2017 Texas Legislature passed House Bill 3016. This allows a non-disclosure for certain DWI case in order to conceal the case from private entities such as employers. Texas Government Code 411.0731 allows for non-disclosure petitions to be filed.

To qualify under this law, the petitioner was convicted of DWI under offense 49.04 with a Class B DWI case and placed on probation. The petitioner completed probation and paid all fines, costs, and restitution if any and was not revoked. This law does not apply to a petitioner on probation for a Class A misdemeanor DWI case.

The petitioner also must have had an alcohol concentration level of less than .15 at the time of an analysis of the petitioners blood, breath, or urine. Petitioner must have satisfied the requirements of Section 411.074 of the Government Code. This means that the person cannot have previously been convicted or placed on deferred adjudication for an offense requiring sex offender registration. It will not allow a person with any previous offense involving kidnapping or family violence.

Also the statute excludes any of the following crimes  Murder 19.02, Capital Murder 19.03, Trafficking of Persons 20A.02, Continuous Trafficking of Persons 20A.03, Injury to a Child, Elderly, or Disabled Person 22.04, Abandoning or Endangering a Child 22.041, Violation of Court Orders of Conditions of Bond in Family Violence, Sexual Assault or Abuse, Stalking, or Trafficking Case 25.07, Repeated Violation of Certain Court Orders or Condtions of Bond in Family Violence, Sexual Assault, or Abuse, Stalking, or Trafficking Case 25.072, or Stalking 42.072.

The petitioner also can not have been convicted or placed on deferred adjudication community supervision while waiting after the probation period is over for another offense other than a traffic offense punishable by fine only.

More Texas Non-Disclosure Eligibility Information

Petitioner must wait a period of time for the non-disclosure depending on whether an ignition interlock device was installed. The waiting period is 2 years upon probation completion if the petitioner installed an ignition interlock device for at least 6 months as a condition of probation. The waiting period is 5 years after the probation is complete if probation did not restrict petitioners use of a motor vehicle with a ignition interlock device for at least 6 months.

Once this is all satisfied the judge will issue an Order of Non-disclosure in the Best Interest of Justice.

Author: Eric Torberson

Eric Torberson is a licensed attorney in Texas as well as licensed in the federal courts of the southern and western districts of Texas.