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License Suspension in Texas

The law exists to keep people safe. When it comes to driving in Texas, the law helps keep people safe by preventing unfit drivers from traveling Texan roadways. The law keeps them from hurting themselves or others due to unpredictable or reckless driving. It is used by the courts to help determine if such drivers should have their licenses suspended.

How Do I Get a Suspended License in Texas?

A driver’s license suspension is a temporary hold placed on someone’s license that disallows that person from legally operating a motor vehicle for a set period of time. A license suspension occurs upon review of one’s driving record and assessment of driving fitness.

Someone can be deemed an unfit driver and have his or her license suspended for many reasons. Sometimes a driver’s health impacts their ability to drive, such as an altered mental state or a physical event or condition. Other times, a driver’s specific actions behind the wheel are illegal, like texting while driving. Whenever someone’s driving skills are impacted to the point of becoming dangerous, that person is unfit to drive and subject to license suspension. 

License suspensions can result automatically from a driver having an excessive number of moving violations on the record. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS), any driver with four or more moving violations within a 12-month period or seven or more moving violations within a 24-month period may have their license suspended immediately when stopped for another infraction. Further, any driver who commits serious violations such as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (especially if he or she fails or does not take a chemical test for blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level) or driving without insurance can end up with a suspended license; this occurs when the driver causes an accident that causes an injury or fatality.

These are some of the most common infractions that can result in having one’s driver’s license suspended. However, there are others. If you have questions about your driver’s license suspension, your best bet is to speak directly to a qualified attorney for assistance.

How Long Will a License in Texas Be Suspended?

The length of a driver’s license suspension varies depending on the specific offense of the driver, the driver’s age, and other factors. The length is determined by a hearing officer in a Texas court. For example, if a driver who is 21 years old or older is convicted of a DWI in Texas, his or her license can be suspended for up to two years. If that driver is under age 21, his or her license would be suspended for one year plus 180 days if he or she does not complete an alcohol education program, and an additional 90 days if he or she is required by the court to complete community service and have an interlock ignition device installed.

Having your driver’s license suspended is a serious issue with many significant consequences. In part two of this series, we will address the consequences of continuing to drive while your license is suspended.

Jarvis, Garcia, & Erskine Law is an experienced team of caring and competent lawyers available to help you with driver’s license suspensions or other legal issues. If you are in the Austin, Texas area, you can contact Jarvis, Garcia, & Erskine Law online or at 512-359-3030 to discuss your situation with a licensed attorney.