Get an Occupational License In San Antonio after a DWI arrest.
If police arrest you for a DWI in Bexar County, then there is a high chance DPS will suspend your driver’s license. This causes an additional headache for drivers arrested on a DWI charge. In particular, motorists need a license to drive to work, go to school, pick up kids from daycare, or run basic errands. Worse yet, if the motorist drives with a suspended license, then police can arrest him for driving with a suspended license.
But drivers in this position have an option. They may qualify for an occupational driver’s license. The law calls this an essential-needs license. It allows motorists to drive after DPS suspends their license. And drivers arrested for a first-time DWI or DUI case can get one. This is true even if the blood or breath test shows the driver is over the legal limit.
Notably, there are two ways to get this license. The easiest way is to hire a lawyer. In fact, your DWI lawyer should be able to help you with this. This is the best way to do it. The lawyer will prepare your paperwork and make sure it is done correctly. He will also tell you if you qualify for a license.
The second way is to do it yourself. The upside of this approach is that it can save you money. The downside is if you do it wrong, the judge may deny your request. For this reason, I want to outline the process of what to expect if you do this yourself. But remember, this post is not intended as legal advice.
How Do You Get An Occupational (Essential Needs) License In Bexar County, Texas after a DWI Arrest?
The pdf form below contains the paperwork for an occupational-driver’s license in Bexar County, Texas. You can use this form to file it with the Bexar County Clerk’s Office. If you have a felony DWI case, then you may need to file it with the Bexar County District Clerk’s Office.
However, if you have a felony DWI case, then you should hire an attorney to help you. This is a more serious case and you will need legal help. Finally, the fee to file for an occupational license went up on 1 January 2022. It increased from $247.00 to $350.00.
Bexar County Occupational License Checklist after a First-Time DWI Arrest
DIY Checklist to obtain an Occupational License after a DWI arrest in Bexar County, Texas:
- Obtain proof of auto insurance.
Texas law requires all drivers to have insurance.
- Obtain a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR-22);
If the judge approves your request for an occupational license, you will need to mail proof of SR-22 insurance to DPS.
- Obtain a certified copy of your driving record;
You can request a record from DPS.
- Pay reinstatement and occupational license fees to DPS;
Click here to check on the reinstatement fees.
- Pay Bexar County filing fee;
Fee will depend on whether you file it with the County Court, District Court, or JP Court. [Note–the filing fees in Bexar County increased from $247.00 to $350.00 on January 1, 2022.]
- File a verified Petition for an Occupational Driver’s License;
Click this link for a sample petition. Also, DPS links to the Travis County Government Library with other sample petitions you can use. Make sure the petition is correctly filled out. And you need to have it notarized.
Caution: Some people are not eligible for an occupational license. Make sure you are eligible for an occupational driver’s license before you file.
- Next, present your verified petition and proposed order to a judge and obtain a signature approving your occupational license;
You will need to set your case for a hearing and then appear in court. The judge will either approve or deny your request for an essential needs license. If approved, then see step 8 below.
- Finally, Mail the documents to DPS.
DPS has the list of the documents you must send. Further, some courts will send the documents to DPS for you. But you must prepare all the paperwork discussed above and make sure it is correct. Once you complete this last step, then send certified copies of the court’s order to the address below.
DPS Mailing Address:
Texas Department of Public Safety
Enforcement and Compliance Service
P.O. Box 15999
Austin, Texas 78761-5999
San Antonio DWI and DUI Criminal Defense.
This process can be overwhelming and intimidating to go through alone. For this reason, if you are arrested for a DWI and want to hire an attorney, then feel free to contact me for a free consultation.
Attorney Genaro R. Cortez.