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Texas Driving Record
"Traffic safety is the primary responsibility of all highway users. Texans have traditionally accepted this responsibility by practicing safe and courteous driving behavior." - Stanley E. Clark, Director Texas Department of Public Safety
Texas Driver License
Who may operate a motor vehicle in Texas
- Residents who have a valid Texas driver license.
- The driver of an official motor vehicle in the service of the United States or state military servicewithout a valid Texas driver license, unless the vehicle is a Commercial Motor Vehicle as defined in Section 522.003(5), Texas Commercial Driver License Act (Texas Transportation Code). See pages 1-5 through 1-7 for a further explanation.
- Any person while driving or operating any road machine, farm tractor, or implement of husbandry temporarily operated or moved on a highway is exempt from licensure, unless the vehicle is a Commercial Motor Vehicle as defined in Section 522.003(5), Texas Commercial Driver License Act (Texas Transportation Code). See pages 1-5 through 1-7 for a further explanation.
- A nonresident (at least 16 years of age) who has in his possession a valid driver license issued to him in his home state may operate a vehicle which is permitted to be operated with a Class C or Class M driver license in Texas.
- Nonresidents (at least 18 years of age) may drive any vehicle in Texas if they are legally licensed to drive such a vehicle in their home state or country, and their home state or country grants like recognition to citizens of Texas.
- The validity of any Texas driver license held by any person who enters or is in the United States Armed Forces shall continue in full force and effect so long as the service continues and the person remains absent from this State, and not to exceed 90 days following the day on which the licensee is honorably separated from the service or returns to this state, unless the license is sooner suspended, cancelled, or revoked.
- A nonresident on active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States who has a valid license issued by his home state and such nonresidents spouse or dependent son or daughter who has a valid license issued by such persons home state.
- Any person on active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States who has in his possession a valid license issued in a foreign country by the Armed Forces may operate a motor vehicle in this state for a period of time not to exceed 90 days from the date of his return to the United States.
- New residents who are properly licensed have 30 days after entry into the state to secure a Texas driver license.
Suspensions and Revocations in Texas
Convictions of the following offenses will result in the automatic suspension of a driving privilege. (See the Commercial Driver License Handbook for additional information concerning disqualifications. Also, see Suspensions/Revocations for Individuals Under 21 for additional suspension information.)
- driving while intoxicated (DWI) by use of alcohol or drugs
- drug offense
- intoxication manslaughter
- intoxication assault
- failure to stop and render aid
- causing the death or serious injury of anyone while operating a motor vehicle
- any offense punishable as a felony under the motor vehicle laws of Texas
- overtaking and passing a school bus (subsequent conviction)
- boating while intoxicated
- evading arrest
- driving while license invalid
- altered/unlawful use of driver license
- displaying or possessing a driver license or identification card that is fictitious or altered
- lending a driver license or identification card to someone else
- possessing more than one valid driver license or identification card
- providing false information or documents when applying for a driver license
- making, selling, or possessing a document deceptively similar to a driver license or identification card issued by the Department of Public Safety
- fictitious license plate, registration certificate, or safety inspection sticker
- fraudulent government records
- racing a motor vehicle on public highway or street
The Department of Public Safety has the authority to suspend/revoke the driver license or driving privilege of any driver, after an opportunity for proper hearing, for the following reasons. (See the Commercial Driver License Handbook for additional information concerning disqualifications.) A reinstatement fee is required for all discretionary suspensions/revocations.
- driving while license suspended
- causing a serious accident while operating a motor vehicle
- becoming incompetent to drive
- repeated violations of traffic laws
- 4 or more convictions for moving violations occurring separately within any 12-month period or 7 or more within any 24-month period
- habitual reckless or negligent driving
- permit unlawful or fraudulent use of ones driver license
- violating a driver license endorsement requirement
- two or more convictions for violating a driver license restriction
- failure to comply with the terms of a citation issued by another state that is a member of the Nonresident Violator Compact of 1977
- failure to complete a DWI education program within 181 days if completion is a term of probation upon conviction of DWI
- failure to complete a repeat offender alcohol education program as required when convicted of DWI
- failure to complete a drug education program as required upon conviction of a drug offense
- failure to provide medical information when requested
- failure to take or pass an examination when requested
- fleeing or attempting to flee from a police officer
- has committed an offense in another state, which if committed in this state would be grounds for suspension or revocation
- fail to stop for a school bus (second conviction)
- violates a probation order set by a previous hearing
Texas Drunk Driving
Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) is a problem that affects all Texans. To make Texas safer, laws have been enacted to deter people from drinking and driving or to punish those who choose to drink and drive.
1st DWI OFFENSE (Class B misdemeanor) - Punishable as a fine not to exceed $2,000.00, confinement in jail for not less than 72 hours nor more than 180 days, and a driver license (or driving privilege) suspension of not less than 90 days nor
more than 365 days. The court may probate the jail sentence and waive the driver license suspension on the first offense ONLY. Possession of an open container of an alcoholic beverage increases the minimum term of confinement by 3 days to 6 days for a 1st offense.
2nd DWI OFFENSE (Class A misdemeanor) - Punishable by a fine not to exceed $4,000.00, confinement in jail for not less than 30 days nor more than 1 year, and a driver license (or driving privilege) suspension of not less than 180 days nor more than 2 years.
3rd (or subsequent) DWI OFFENSE (Felony of the Third Degree) - Punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000.00, confinement in the penitentiary for not less than 2 years nor more than 10 years, and a driver license (or driving privilege) suspension
of not less than 180 days nor more than 2 years.
DWI with Child Passenger Under 15 (State Jail Felony) - Punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000 confinement in jail for not less than 180 days nor more than 2 years.
Intoxication Assault (Felony of the Third Degree) - Punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000.00, confinement in the penitentiary for not less than 2 years nor more than 10 years, and a driver license (or driving privilege) suspension of not less than 90 days nor more than 1 year.
Intoxication Manslaughter (Felony of the Second Degree) - Punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000.00, confinement in the penitentiary for not less than 2 years nor more than 20 years, and a driver license (or driving privilege) suspension
of not less than 180 days nor more than 2 years.
Texas Implied Consent Law
In Texas, if a person is arrested for an offense arising out of acts alleged to have been committed while the person was operating a motor vehicle in a public place, or a watercraft, while intoxicated, or the person is a minor and has ANY detectable amount of alcohol in their system while operating a motor vehicle in a public place, the person is deemed to have consented to submit to the taking of one or more specimens of the persons breath or blood for analysis to determine the alcohol concentration or the presence in the persons body of a controlled substance, drug, dangerous drug, or other substance. Refusal to provide a specimen results in the suspension of the driving privilege and any driver license. The suspension for a minor who refuses is 180 days for the first refusal, and 2 years for subsequent refusals. A minor who gives a specimen which confirms that he or she has been operating a motor vehicle in a public place with ANY detectable amount of alcohol in their system (but which is below the 0.08% BAC legal limit of intoxication) will have their driver license suspended (or their driving privilege will be denied if unlicensed) for 60 days for the first offense, for 120 days for the second offense, and for 180 days for the third and subsequent offenses. The minor may request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge to contest the suspension.
Texas Point System
|Points||Type of Violation|
|2||moving violation conviction in Texas or that of another state|
|3||moving violation conviction in Texas or another state that resulted in a vehicle crash|
Additional Texas Resources