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Texas drunk drivers will have to pay child support if they kill a parent or guardian

Texas House Bill 393 went into effect on Sept. 1. The bill makes Texas drunk drivers pay a heavy price.

TEXAS, USA — It's the four words we've all heard before, Don't Drink and Drive!

“We want to get drunk drivers off the roadway before they injure or kill themselves or others," said Sgt. Erick Estrada of Texas Department of Public Safety.

However, sadly in the state of Texas in 2022, 1,203 people died from DUI-related traffic crashes, that's one person killed every seven hours and 17 minutes.

Which is why a big piece of legislation has been put in place, that's House Bill 393. A new Texas law that requires convicted drunk drivers to pay child support if they kill a child's parent or guardian.

“If you choose to drink and drive, law enforcement across the state will be watching we will pull you over and arrest you," Sgt. Estrada said. "Drivers arrested for DWI can also face up to $17,000 in fines and fees, jail time and loss of their drivers license.”

Now with House Bill 393, those convicted of intoxication manslaughter will have to pay those child support payments until the child is 18-years-old or until the child graduates from High School whichever one comes later.

According to the legislation, the court will determine the amount of restitution for child, factoring in all of the child's needs.

“Drunk driving is 100% preventable. Do not operate a motor vehicle if you are under the influence. There are different options for you via taxi services, ride share and public transportation," Sgt. Estrada said. "It’s simple: do not get behind the wheel if you’ve been drinking.”

If the drunk driver is unable to make the payments because they are locked up, then they are expected to make payments no later than the first anniversary. 

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