What Counts as an Open Container?

Open container laws have been on the books in Texas since 2001, when federal block funding requirements stipulated that the state comply with national open container standards in order to receive federal transportation funding. Since that time, Texans have been banned from consuming alcohol while riding in the passenger seat in a car on public highways.

The exact wording of the open container statutes leaves some room for confusion as to what constitutes a violation, and it can be valuable to have a working knowledge of the law to protect your rights and interests. In the event that you do find yourself facing open container charges, the experienced Dallas DWI attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter will work tirelessly to help you resolve your case favorably. Contact us today at (214) 845-7007 to discuss your case with a qualified legal professional.

Exceptions for Open Containers

Open containers are defined as any unsealed or partially emptied vessel containing an alcoholic beverage in the passenger area of the car. The key issue is what constitutes the passenger area of the car, as the following locations are exempt:

  • The bed of a truck;
  • The trunk;
  • The area behind the last seat in an SUV or hatchback;
  • Inside a locked glove compartment or console.

By keeping any potentially incriminating containers in the above areas, you will likely avoid open container charges.

Contact Us

The Dallas DWI lawyers at the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter have spent their careers defending the rights and interests of Texans accused of intoxication crimes. Call today at (214) 845-7007 for a free consultation to discuss the details of your case.


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