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Suspended Driver's License Offenses

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What is DWLI? DWLI, Driving While License Invalid, is where an individual drives a car while their Texas driver's license is invalid.

How We Can Help: If your license has been suspended and you need to drive, we can help you drive legally over the suspension, during the time your license is suspended, but obtaining an Occupational License. An Occupational Driver's License allows you to drive during the suspension for employment purposes, school, court, and daily household chores.

What makes DWLI illegal? The Texas Criminal Penal Code 521.457. Driving While license Invalid indicates a person commits an offense if the person operates a motor vehicle on a highway after the person's driver's license has been canceled or during a period that the person's driver's license is suspended or revoked under any law of this state or while the person's driver's license is expired.

What are the DWLI Punishments? An offense under this section is a misdemeanor punishable by: (1) a fine of not less than $100 or more than $500; and (2) confinement in county jail for a term of not less than 72 hours or more than six months. If it is shown on the trial of an offense under this section that the person has previously been convicted of an offense under this section or an offense under Section 601.371(a), as that law existed before September 1, 2003, the offense is a Class A misdemeanor.

Common Criminal Cases Involving DWLI, Driving While License Invalid: The most common DWLI, Driving While License Invalid, cases and DWLI, Driving While License Invalid, arrests involve an individual driving after a prior offense has suspended his or her Texas driver's license, such as a DWI or other tickets.


There are many ways your Texas Driver's License can be suspended in Texas. Most of the causes for a Suspended Driver's License is a result of a specific driving violation or ticket, and yet other driver's license suspensions may be due to violations of State laws that have nothing to do with driving.

Some of the most common Texas driver's license suspensions are:

  • DWI, Driving Under the Influence. Your Texas driver's license will be suspended for between 90 days and two years for a first time DWI, if you are found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. There is also a mandatory license suspension even before you get to Court! Typically for 90 days, the arresting officer will take your license and issue you a temporary license until your ALR hearing. The ALR hearing will be within 15 days of the arrest, and if you miss it, you're license will be administratively suspended.
  • Drug Offenses. Unrelated to driving, if you suffer a conviction for a drug offense, your Texas Driver's License will be suspended for 180 days. Plus, you may not be eligible for Driver's License reinstatement unless you complete the Drug Offender Education Program, which is a 15 hour, $90 class. If you fail to complete this class, your Texas Driver's License will be suspended indefinitely.
  • Excessive Tickets for Moving Violations. Too many tickets for traffic violations will suspend your driver's license. Specifically, if you receive four or more traffic tickets in a 12 month period or seven or more traffic tickets in a 24 month period.
  • Driving with a Suspended License or no License. Driving with a suspended license will lead to an increase in the length of the suspension, equal to the original suspension period.
  • Driving without Insurance. All motor vehicles driven in Texas must be properly insured. A second or subsequent ticket for driving without insurance can result in your license being suspended.
  • Physical or Psychological Disqualification. Driving privileges may be suspended if, upon re-examination, DPS finds a person is physically or psychologically unable to drive safely. This category cannot obtain an Occupational License.
  • Other Driving-Related Violations. Texas driver's licenses may be suspended for reckless driving,fatal accidents, or if a license was suspended in another State.
  • Underage Drinking. Alcohol offenses that result in a Conviction will suspended your license if you are under 21 years old. Even if you're arrested and the case is dismissed for any reason (other than insufficient evidence or a not guily verdict after trial), the minor is required to take the MIP/MIC Class to clear the way to retain their driver's license.
  • Non-Driving Reasons for License Suspension. A variety of non-driving violations or issues can result in your license being suspended, including failing to pay traffic tickets, fines or surcharges, failing to appear in court, and not paying child support.

Common Questions about Texas Suspended Driver's Licenses

Why is my License Suspended?
Can I get a temporary license?
What are your Fees?
Your license may be suspended for a multitide of reasons, from traffic ticket violations, convictions, unpaid surcharges, accidents, or lapses in automobile liability insurance.
In most cases, you can get a temporary license, called an Occupational License, in Texas, that lets you drive in limited circumstances while your license is suspended.

Our legal fees vary depending on the area and type of Petition we'll need to file on your behalf. Typically it's less than the cost of another DWLI ticket.
Do I need to Pay my Surcharges before I can get a temporary license?
I have several warrants for outstanding tickets. Can I still get an Occupational License?
How Long can I get an
Occupational License for?
No, you do not need to pre-pay your surcharges. You will need to pay the surcharges before having your Driver's license reinstated, but you can use an Occupational License to drive during the suspension.
Yes, you can obtain an Occupational License if pending cases and warrants. You will need to pay or resolve the warrants and tickets before having your Driver's license reinstated. However, you would still be subject to arrest on the warrant.
Occupational Licenses can be valid for up to two years. If at the end of two years your driver's license is still suspended, we can apply for an extension.
Isn't it Double Jeopardy for DPS to Suspend my Driver's License
again, after the Court did?
What if I never had a License? Can I still get an Occupational License?
When can I get my actual Texas Driver's License back?
Unfortunatly, no. Once suspension is criminal (the ticket/case), and the other is considered administrative.
If you were never issued a Texas Driver's License, or your license has expired, we can arrange a new driver's test with DPS to validate your Occupational License.
It depends on your suspensions and lenths, as well as the fees and surcharges you owe. Each case is different.
What is SR22 and
why do I need it?
Can I get an Occupational License myself, without a Lawyer?
Can you help with
DWLI tickets and an Occupational License?
SR22 is a component of auto insurance that notified the State (DPS) if you lapse in coverage. in other words, SR22 guarantees that DPS will know if you don't have insurance. It is required on all Occupational Driver's Licenses, even if you have never had a DWI.
You may be able to, depending on the County and Court/Judge, but compared to other types of lawyers fees, Occupational Licenses are reasonably priced (at least with our office). The law and standard forms are constantly changing, and you want an Occupational License done correctly the first time, so you can legally drive as soon as possible.

Yes, we handle DWLI/DWLS as well as Occupational Licenses.

Call us for a Free Consultation to see how we can help with your specific circumstances.

Call us at 512-800-3741.

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Driving While License Invalid/Suspended
Failure to Stop and Render Aid
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Law Office of Robert Keates
700 Lavaca St #1400 Austin, TX 78701 URL of Map
Phone: 512-800-3741 - Fax: 512-870-9403

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Law Office of Robert Keates

700 Lavaca St #1400 Austin, TX 512-800-3741
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