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Helpful Legal Information

What is the DWI Eye Test?

The DWI eye test is called the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. This is the first of the three "standard" DWI tests. During this test an officer might have a pen-light or might use a finger illuminated by a flashlight. The officer will move the light or the finger to the left and right. The purpose of the test is to see if there is any involuntary jerking of the eye. There is a second part of the test that looks for "vertical" nystagmus, but that is not considered "standardized" like the HGN. As part of the test, police instruct you to follow...

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What are the DWI Tests Called?

One of the most common questions asked about DWIs is for information about the DWI Tests. There are three "standard" tests police officer have you perform during a DWI investigation. These three tests are: HGN ("eye" test), Walk-and-turn (walking test), and One-Leg Stand. There are other tests that police sometimes use, but they are non-standardized tests. However, even the "standardized" tests are plagued with issues. What are the DWI Tests? Before making any judgement on the "accuracy" of the tests, it might help to know exactly *what* the tests are. The "Eye" Test - HGN The first of the three "standardized" tests is the...

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Can you get a DWI Blood Test Thrown Out?

How can you Suppress a DWI Blood Test? While most people assume that a DWI Blood Test is automatically admitted, the truth is not so simple. There are various issues when it comes to DWI Blood Tests. Perhaps the person drawing blood performed the blood draw incorrectly. Or, maybe the seals on the blood tubes were faulty. These are just two broad examples. A DWI Blood Test is a scientific issue, meaning it must satisfy the legal test for scientific evidence. In short, there is a possibility to suppress the Blood Test depending on the facts. Even if not suppressed, a judge...

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Can a Criminal Defense Lawyer Defend a DWI the same as a DWI Lawyer?

While most think that a DWI is just another criminal charge, the truth is that DWI is a highly technical area of the law. A DWI case contains many technical issues such as the DWI blood draw or DWI breath test, to name a couple examples. While a regular Criminal Defense Lawyer might know how to navigate the court system, they do not have the same amount of knowledge or experience in navigating the science behind a DWI case. A Board Certified DWI Lawyer, such as Mimi, knows the ins-and-outs of a DWI case. DWI Defense CLEs To really understand the intricacies...

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How can I get a DWI off my record?

At the Coffey Firm, we understand that sealing a DWI is still a "fake" measure. A Deferred Adjudication DWI is still a "conviction" if you get another DWI. The government can still see sealed DWIs at all times. Our main goal is to avoid a DWI if possible, including fake dismissal DWIs. The Coffey Firm will fight to get, and keep, a DWI off your record. A very common question for anyone with a DWI on their record is whether it will stay on their record. Similarly, many ask if there is a way to get a DWI off their record....

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Are DWI Blood Tests Accurate?

Some initial questions: I thought DWI blood tests were automatically admitted? Isn't blood testing the gold standard? The answer to both is NO. A judge or jury may disregard DWI blood tests. When it comes to scientific evidence, there are many factors that a court needs to consider when determining the reliability of a scientific theory or technique. While these factors apply to both civil and criminal cases, these factors might mean the difference between suppression of evidence and a conviction in criminal cases. In Texas, these factors mainly come from three cases: Frye, Daubert, and Kelly. I will go through...

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Life Insurance & Texas DWI

Life insurance is very important to ensure that loved ones have some security in case the worst happens. But, did you know that a DWI conviction might negatively impact your ability to obtain life insurance? While there does not seem to be any law stating life insurance consequences of a DWI, many life insurance companies tend to make obtaining a policy difficult with a DWI on a person's record. For most companies, there is a 2-3 year waiting period after a DWI to get a life insurance policy. However, some companies might have a person wait up to 5 years,...

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Turn Signals: A Common Cause for DWI Stops

One of the most common bases for a traffic stop leading a DWI arrest is failure to use a signal. While it is a relatively minor offense, keep in mind that police only need a single reason, no matter how minor, to have reasonable suspicion to make a stop. Reasonable suspicion requires articulable facts that indicate that a person is, was, or will be involved in criminal activity. Though small, traffic violations are still "criminal activity" for purposes of making DWI stops. Turn Signal Statute The statute regarding turn signals is Transportation Code section 545.104. That statute states: (a) An operator shall use...

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Operation and DWI

Despite the title “driving while intoxicated”, the law really only requires what it calls “operation” while intoxicated. This is one of the main reasons why there is plenty of confusion when police make a DWI arrest on a person sleeping in their car (for example). In other words, there is no actual “driving” requirement for DWI stops! Can you believe the law allows something so ridiculous?! What is Operation? The worst part of the “operation” requirement is that the law does not clearly define what "operation" is. The most common, and simple, way to describe “operation” is performing an act that enables...

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The Coffey Firm’s Mission Statement

Everyone makes mistakes. What makes an arrest so scary is the unknown and the shame. An arrest feels like society plastered your name on a billboard or aired it on the news (sometimes it is). The embarrassment of having our family, friends, neighbors and coworkers know about an arrest feels unbearable. I understand this. Outside of the fear of the unknown, the grief of letting others down is the single most important reason I have found that people come and hire me. Our name, character and reputation mean everything to us. When you go through a DWI, you truly feel...

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