Administrative Driver’s License Revocations: Part 1 – Driver’s 21 and Older

Even though I practice criminal defense and have several years of combined experience in both prosecuting and defending Driving while Intoxicated (DWI cases) in Texas, I am constantly having to look in the Transportation Code to see what suspensions apply and for how long.  There are multiple events that may suspend a person’s driving privilege in Texas, but this first entry is focused on suspensions of a driver who is 21 years of age or older (driver’s who are not minors).  My intention is to make this information more accessible and easily understandable for anyone who consults it; however, my caveat is that this was only current at the time it was written and the statute should be consulted if you need to be certain of the current status of ALR suspensions in Texas.

Offense Failure or Refusal Case Length of Suspension

1st alcohol-related or drug-related enforcement contact*

Failure case – having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more. Tex. Trans. Code Sec. 524.012 90 days
1st alcohol-related or drug-related enforcement contact Refusal case – refusing the request of an officer to submit to the taking of a specimen. Tex. Trans. code Sec. 724.035 180 days
One or more alcohol-related or drug-related enforcement contact in 10 years before arrest Failure case – Having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more. Tex. Trans. Code Sec. 524.012 1 year
One or more alcohol-related or drug-related enforcement contact in 10 years before arrest Refusal case – refusing the request of an officer to submit to the taking of a specimen.  Tex. Trans Code Sec. 724.035 2 years

* "Alcohol-related or drug-related enforcement contact" means a driver’s license suspension, disqualification, or prohibition order under the laws of this state or another state resulting from (1) a conviction for driving while intoxicated, (2) a refusal to submit to the taking of a breath or blood specimen following an arrest for driving while intoxicated, or (3) having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more following an arrest for driving while intoxicated.  See, Texas Transportation Code Sec. 524.001 and Penal Code Sec. 49.01.

This chart only governs suspensions for the actual ALR (civil) portion of the case and should not be construed as the only suspension that a person may receive.