Like most parents, you work hard to raise good kids. Despite your best efforts, your son or daughter probably regularly makes mistakes. Simply put, mistakes are part of the adolescence experience. Fortunately, as with most errors in judgment, there are no long-term consequences. That generally is not true, though, for an underage DWI conviction.
Texas does not take underage drinking and driving lightly. On the contrary, prosecutors may choose to subject your child to the adult court system. While the first and second instances of underage DWI are usually misdemeanors, subsequent infractions could give your son or daughter a felony rap sheet. If prosecutors have charged your child with underage DWI, you must explore all legal options. You should, however, realize the consequences of an underage DWI may not cease when your child completes the sentence.
Insurance premiums are likely to rise
Insuring a young driver can be expensive. If your child has an underage DWI conviction, you can assume your insurance rates are about to go through the roof. Because most DWI offenses remain on a driver’s record for 10 years, you or your child will likely pay high rates for the foreseeable future.
College may become significantly more expensive
Most colleges and universities ask applicants to reveal past criminal conduct. While a simple underage DWI conviction probably will not keep your child out of school, it could result in a lost scholarship. Further, if your son or daughter plans to participate in collegiate athletics, a DWI may curtail those aspirations.
Future jobs may be out of reach
Your son or daughter has probably given considerable thought to future career prospects. If your child wants to serve in the military, join law enforcement, work as a professional driver or pursue a professional license, receiving an underage DWI conviction could be problematic.
If the young driver in your family faces criminal charges, you may experience a variety of emotions. You cannot, however, forget about your child’s future. By realizing how an underage DWI arrest or conviction can mess up future plans, you can better advise your son or daughter.