The state of Texas strongly upholds every Texan’s constitutional right to bear arms.

Criminal defense attorneys stand by law-abiding citizens in their gun ownership and ability to protect themselves with personally owned handguns.

Yet the laws differ when a DWI is involved, as DWI is one offense criminal defense lawyers know can be severely punished.

A felony DWI conviction can definitely affect a Texas resident’s right to own and carry a gun.

DWI and Gun Ownership - Two Things That Do Not Go Together

Due to the potential dangers associated with both, anyone convicted of felony DWI in the state of Texas may not own or carry a handgun.

Anyone with a substance abuse problem, including the abuse of alcohol, could also be prohibited from owning or carrying a handgun.

As such, criminal defense attorneys warn that even DWI felony charges could provide evidence to revoke a handgun owner’s right to own and carry their gun.

Texas Gun Ownership Law Stipulations on DWI

Even with a clean prior driving and criminal record, criminal defense lawyers point out that all it takes is one DWI offense for a defendant to lose his or her right to bear arms.

According to current Texas gun ownership laws, anyone convicted of a felony may not own or carry a gun on their person.

A DWI may be classified as anything from a Class B misdemeanor for a first-time offense to a felony for a third-time offense or DWI with a child in the car.

The felony convictions result in the loss of gun ownership and carrying privileges for 5 years.

From the moment felony charges are filed, criminal defense attorneys advise that those charged may no longer carry a gun even while charges are pending.

Only after criminal defense attorneys confirm that a defendant has been cleared of charges may they resume carrying their handgun.

In the event that a defendant is convicted of a felony DWI, they may not carry a handgun for 5 years.

At the end of that time, defendants must re-apply for a license to own and carry a gun again.

Owning and Carrying After DWI

Although a DWI felony charge or conviction may not necessarily prevent a defendant from ever owning and carrying a handgun, criminal defense lawyers do know that it is a possibility.

After a felony conviction, defendants are prohibited from owning or carrying for a minimum of 5 years, after which they may then reapply for a new gun owner’s license.

Those who are charged but then cleared of charges as well as anyone who has completed their probation and/or deferred adjudication must also wait 5 years before applying.

When reapplying for a license to own and carry a handgun, criminal defense attorneys stress that applicants must still document their arrest on the application.

The application must include details about the incident including the year, location, type of arrest, charges made, and the outcome of the arrest.

The application will be screened and a full background check performed as part of the determination as to whether a defendant can have their handgun license reinstated.

Some may be able to own and carry again while others, especially those with repeat offenses or other charges or convictions on their record, likely will not.

DWI and Gun Ownership Final Thoughts

Driving under the influence in Texas is not only dangerous criminal defense attorneys state that it can complicate many other areas of a defendant’s life.

It can affect his or her ability to be hired or stay employed, drive and remain independent in the future, as well as own and carry a handgun.

Texas criminal defense lawyers encourage everyone to avoid driving after consuming alcohol.

It can save many lives and allow them to continue to exercise their constitutional right to bear arms!

Garza & Elizondo, LLP

Downtown Brownsville
Principal Office
680 East St. Charles St, Suite 600
Brownsville TX 78520
(956) 202-0067

North Brownsville
Meetings With Attorneys By Appointment Only
1393 East Alton Gloor Blvd, Suite 12
Brownsville TX 78526
(956) 202-0067

San Benito
Meetings With Attorneys By Appointment Only
2395 La Palma Street, Suite A
San Benito TX 78586

(956) 202-0067