Probation is an agreement between you and the judge in which the judge agrees not to impose a jail sentence in exchange for you agreeing to do (or not do) certain things during a set amount of time. This set amount of time is known as the probationary period. For a first offense, the probationary period can extend up to two years.
In most cases, if you have no prior convictions, then a judge will suspend your entire jail sentence and place you on probation for a minimum of six months. Typically, a probation period is one year in length. During probation, you are required to do the following:
- Report to the probation officer assigned to you;
- Pay fines, court costs, and monthly probation fees;
- Do community service for 24 to 80 hours in duration;
- Attend a Texas DWI Education class;
- Attend a Victim Impact Panel (VIP);
- Get a drug and alcohol evaluation;
- Maintain a job and support any and all dependents; and
- Take random urinalysis.
In addition to the things that you must do while on probably, there are also some things that you must not do. These include:
- Drink alcohol or take drugs;
- Visit bars, clubs, or lounges;
- Violate the law;
- Socialize with persons of questionable moral character; and
- Refrain from committing a crime or associating with criminals.
If you receive a second DWI conviction, then your chances of having your entire jail sentence reduced in place of probation are much more minimal. Instead, there is a minimum 72-hour continuous confinement requires for a second DWI conviction. The judge may, however, suspect the rest of yours sentence and place on you on probation. For a third DWI conviction, which is considered to be a felony conviction, you must spend 10 days in county jail. After that, you may receive a probation sentence in lieu of a jail sentence that requires you to perform community service and participate in a substance abuse program.
Above intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault are briefly discussed. If you obtain probation for intoxication manslaughter, then you will be required to serve a community service sentence ranging between 240 and 800 hours; serve a minimum jail sentence of 120 days; and participate in substance abuse/alcohol programs whether they be in-patient or outpatient. The penalties are similar with an intoxication assault probation—you will have to serve community service, serve in county jail for a minimum of 30 days, and participate in a substance abuse program.