What may have started as a fun night out with friends can quickly go south when you’re standing outside your vehicle in handcuffs facing a DWI charge. Whether you’re guilty or not, knowing what penalties you can face is essential to preparing for your criminal case. If convicted, you may wonder if this charge can be eradicated. Keep reading to learn whether or not you can have a DWI expunged from your record and how Houston DWI defense attorneys can help you navigate these charges.
Can a DWI Be Expunged in Texas?
If you are facing a DWI charge in Texas, you may think you can simply have this charge expunged after a conviction. However, this is not possible. A DWI conviction can never be expunged. As such, this will remain on your permanent record for the rest of your life.
While this seems like bad news, you may be able to have the arrest and charges expunged if there is no conviction. Unfortunately, this can be tricky, as if you are originally arrested for a DWI and your attorney is able to argue for a lesser, you’ll still be unable to erase the charges.
What Are My Alternate Options?
It’s essential to understand that hope is not lost. There are some circumstances in which you can have the charge and arrest expunged from your record. However, it is imperative that you enlist the assistance of an experienced attorney before trying to navigate the legal system by yourself.
The first situation in which you can have your charges expunged is if your case is dismissed. This is because you never received a final conviction. Again, if you are able to receive a reduced offense, you cannot have these expunged if you are convicted. This also applies to plea bargains.
Another instance in which you can receive an expungement of your arrest and charges is if you can secure a not-guilty verdict. Because you are not convicted, you can fight to have anything associated with the offense erased from your record.
Finally, if you only have one DWI when you were a minor, as an adult, you may be eligible to file for expungement. Similarly, if you are a first-time offender and your case is deferred, you might be eligible to petition for your record to be sealed. This means your information cannot be released by public records.
When you’re in trouble, understanding your rights is essential. Since you cannot get a conviction expunged from your record, you’ll need to enlist the assistance of an experienced attorney to help you as soon as you’re arrested on DWI charges. At the Gonzalez Law Group, our dedicated criminal defense team has the necessary experience to help you during this challenging time. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.