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Helpful Legal Information

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. The Coffey Firm understands 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...

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Family Violence: Don’t Settle for a Class C Assault!

While "class C" misdemeanors are the lowest form of misdemeanor, that does NOT mean the long-term effects are the same. Most, if not all, traffic violations are Class C misdemeanors. Because of this, many generalize Class C misdemeanors as the "equivalent" of traffic tickets. That is far from the truth, especially for family violence. Do not be tricked by Class C Family Violence Assaults! What is an Assault? An assault is legally defined as an offensive contact. An offensive contact is a class C assault which is up to a $500 fine. Once the offensive contact causes pain it becomes a class A...

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Texas DWI & Corpus Delicti

The Law Requires Reasonable Suspicion to Detain for Texas DWI One of the basis concepts in Criminal Law is that police must have reasonable suspicion to begin an investigation. Reasonable suspicion exists when, based on the totality of the circumstances, the officer has specific, articulable facts that, when combined with rational inferences from those facts, would lead him to reasonably conclude that a person is, has been, or soon will be engaged in criminal activity. While this is an objective standard under the law, sometimes the subjective intent of the officer seeps in. For example, while the officer may objectively have a reason to stop...

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Probation Revocation is NOT a hearsay “free-for-all”

It is particularly accepted that that the rules of evidence do not apply to probation revocation hearings in Texas. This is a dangerous practice when it comes to people's liberty. Courts are starting to push back against this practice, but many issues still exist when it comes to probation revocation proceedings. Torres v. State Facts A recent case out of the 1st district of Houston is hopefully a step in the right direction. In Torres v. State, No. 01-18-01074-CR (Tex. App.-Houston [1st Dist.] Dec. 22, 2020), the Prosecution moved to revoke Defendant's probation for failing to "successfully complete" the SAFP program. One of...

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Texas DWI Blood Test Issues

Though many don't realize it, most Texas DWI cases involve DWI blood tests rather than breath tests. This is in large part because of the fact that the law allows police to draw your blood by getting a warrant if you refuse to give breath or blood. Regardless of whether police drew blood as a result of consent or a warrant, there are many issues surrounding the reliability of the result of a blood test. This is in addition to the requirements for blood draws in Texas DWI. Fermentation One of the main issues with a Texas DWI blood test is fermentation....

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Miracles Do Happen: Clearing Our Client’s Background

Going above & beyond! So proud of Coffey Firm attorney Geoffrey Reynolds who proved that miracles do happen! Years ago a law enforcement government employee accidentally inverted a digit and made it look like our client had a prior DWI that belonged to someone else. We were told it would take an expunction (fees & a legal process) to clear this up when it was not our client’s fault. Geoff spent 6 months working on this, fighting law enforcement (multiple law enforcement divisions refused to call him back) and was finally successful in fixing this grave error at no cost...

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Marijuana Possession in Fort Worth

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g1MPjSfA8bs[/embed] Though not a perfect (or long-term) solution, the Fort Worth Police Department has a new policy regarding marijuana possession. If police catch a person possessing a small amount of marijuana (usually under 4 ounces), they will confiscate it but not make an arrest or issue a citation. At least, this is the case in Fort Worth. Other police agencies within Tarrant County do not share this policy and still make marijuana arrests. This means it is up to the District Attorney on whether the prosecute a marijuana possession case from one of these other Tarrant County Police Departments. This is...

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