Consequences of an Out-of-State Resident DWI Charge in Texas

car pulled over by police

If you were charged with a DWI in Texas as an out-of-state driver, you can expect to face serious consequences. Keep reading and give our firm a call today to discuss your options with one of our skilled Houston DWI defense attorneys.

What can happen if I was arrested for a DWI in Texas as an out-of-state resident?

Note that it does not matter if you are a resident of another state and are only in Texas for a short amount of time; you still allegedly committed an offense in Texas, and as a result, Texas jurisdiction prevails. What this means is simple: your DWI case will be heard and tried in Texas. And in Texas, like most other states, two processes result from a DWI charge: a criminal process and an administrative process.

What is the criminal process after this charge?

If you were charged with DWI or another related charge in Texas, you must handle the criminal charges in Texas. Employing an attorney in Texas is to your advantage because it may permit you to return home while charges are pending and he negotiates for dismissal or prepares for trial. Your criminal case will be the determining factor in the administrative process and its effect on your driving privileges if your home state belongs to the Driver License Compact Commission.

If your DWI or DWI-related conviction results in jail time and DWI school, then you could potentially serve your time and complete DWI school in your home state. A Texan judge could authorize you to serve your sentence in your home state.

What is the interstate compact?

In the event that your home state is a party to the Interstate Compact, then the overall impact on you, if convicted, is a charge that carries the same penalties that your home state applies to DWI or DWI cases similar to yours.

If your home state penalties are more stringent, then it is to your detriment, but if penalties in Texas are stricter than your home state, then it’s to your advantage.

Regardless, a conviction means penalties applied to you in your home state. Thus, a DWI in Texas is like getting a DWI in your home state. You can mistakenly believe you can run and hide, but you can’t. Texas will place a warrant for your arrest if you do not show up for your hearing, so if you return to Texas, you could be arrested again. You should fight the charge; it doesn’t just go away because you return to your home state.

What states are not a party to the interstate compact?

All states of the United States belong to the Interstate Compact but five states. Those five states include:

  • Wisconsin
  • Tennessee
  • Georgia
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan


If you have sustained a serious injury or are facing criminal charges, contact the Gonzalez Law Group today to learn more about how we can help you through every step of the legal process ahead.