Although a charge of Boating While Intoxicated may seem different from a traditional Driving While Intoxicated charge, it is charged under the same statute. You not only face the same consequences of a DWI but a BWI conviction can be used to enhance a future DWI. This means that if you have a prior Boating While Intoxicated conviction, then receive a DWI years later, the DWI will be charged as a second offense.

Even more surprising, if you are arrested for a BWI you face the same DPS driver’s license suspension as a person who was arrested for a DWI. If you refused a breath or blood test or provided a sample greater than a .08 you face a statutorily required driver’s license suspension.


If you have been arrested for a BWI, contact the team at Stephen T. Bowling, Austin DWI Attorneys today for a free case evaluation: (512) 599-9000.


BWI cases are similar to DWI cases in science and defenses with a few stark differences. As the breath and blood science is the same, it requires us to cross examine the state’s expert witnesses with the same knowledge of breath and blood testing; however, the reason for contact and DWI/BWI standardized field sobriety procedures have two main differences.

In both a DWI and BWI case the officer must first qualify the driver as a candidate for the standardized field sobriety tests. However, in a Boating While Intoxicated case the officer, or game warden, must not only ask qualifying questions to the operator of the boat, but he must also give the person a period of time to shed their sea legs. This waiting period allows the person to acclimate to walking on land after being on a boat.

The second difference is the level of evidence required for law enforcement to make initial contact with the boat operator. In a DWI case, the officer needs reasonable suspicion to stop the vehicle. In a BWI case, a random “safety check” is enough justification to make contact. It is critical to contact an experienced team of Austin BWI Attorneys to fight your charges.


For boaters in the state of Texas, the penalties for a BWI are not just legal. The implied consequences of a conviction on a person’s record can have negative impacts on his or her educational pursuits, career goals, and personal relationships. Furthermore, car insurance premiums are likely to rise for the boater after an arrest or conviction for BWI.

Protect yourself from the present and future impacts of a BWI conviction by contacting the team at Stephen T. Bowling, Austin DWI Attorneys. We will work together to protect your rights and fight for the best possible outcome of your case.

Don’t wait to get trusted counsel. Reach out to the Austin BWI Lawyers today at (512) 599-9000 to set up a free consultation.

Proven Defense by a Former Law Enforcement Officer

Many people who are charged with an Austin DWI just assume there is no way to fight it. They think the best they can hope for is a smaller fine or a reduction in the amount of time they lose their license. We focus on defending anyone accused of a DWI. With the right legal counsel, there are other outcomes. Depending on the facts of the case, what if

  • Instead of months of suspension, you don’t lose your license at all?
  • Instead of making a deal for probation, you never get convicted?
  • Instead of having a DWI conviction, your record stays clean?
  • Instead of cutting bad deals, you get a vigorous DWI defense?

While every case depends on the facts and circumstances at play, mounting an aggressive defense to DWI charges may be your best option. The Austin Criminal Defense attorneys at Stephen T Bowling, P.C., handle all drunk driving cases, defending clients in both the criminal proceedings and driver’s license hearings.

Don’t trust just anyone with your DWI defense. Contact the law firm of Stephen T Bowling, PC, by e-mail or call us at 512-599-9000 to schedule your free consultation with an Austin DWI lawyer to discover some strategies we pursue in defending Austin Driving While Intoxicated cases.

We offer payment plans and accept major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, and Discover.

DWI Case Factors

What is Intoxicated?
What is “operating” a motor vehicle?
What is a “Public Place”?
Drugged Driving
DWI Penalties
DWI with a Child under 15
DWI with a BAC over 0.15
DWI with Open Container
14 day Driver’s License Requirement


Client Testimonials

Average Rating: 5.0                                                Reviews: 36

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  • After finding myself in legal trouble, I contacted a number of different attorneys frantically. When I came across Steve, his extensive knowledge in DWI cases brought me comfort that I could not find elsewhere at the time. Throughout the process he was always available and willing to discuss the status of my case. My DWI charge was dismissed and I happily accepted a non-DWI and I have Mr. Bowling to thank for it.
  • Steve was a guiding light in a sea of uncertainty. He took care of everything for me. He was understanding, kind, and considerate of my worries and all other aspects of my case. He worked with me on the financial side of things and certainly saved me way more money than he cost. I now consider Steve to be not only "my attorney" but my friend as well. I can only give him my highest recommendation. And what's case was dismissed. Thank you Steve!
  • I am very thankful for the quality of service Mr. Bowling provided me. I was discouraged after finding myself in the situation that I did. Mr. Bowling was able to make me feel comfortable with my case, and through his expertise, had my DWI dismissed and the charge reduced to a non-DWI.