Alcohol Offense Lawyer in College Station, Texas Representing Clients Charged With Alcohol-Related Offenses
If your minor age child has been arrested and charged with an alcohol-related offense, you need to speak with an attorney as soon as possible. Many individuals do not feel they need an attorney to handle alcohol-related offenses, especially if they are charged with misdemeanors. However, the truth is that even misdemeanor charges and convictions can stay on your criminal record permanently. Criminal convictions can stay with you for the rest of your life and have serious negative consequences.
When a minor has been charged with an alcohol-related offense, it could very well remain on their criminal record permanently and make it extremely difficult to be accepted into the college or university of their choice. In addition, their driver’s licenses could also be suspended, causing their insurance rates to go up.
When a minor has been charged with any type of alcohol-related offense, you need to seek qualified legal representation immediately. Not only can your livelihood be on the line as far as making a living, but your personal and professional reputation could also be in jeopardy.
Contact our law offices and ask to schedule a free consultation with a member of our legal team to discuss your case. We can advise you of your rights and any legal options that you may have.
What are the Penalties for Consumption of Alcohol by a Minor?
Texas has strict laws regarding minors and underage drinking. The legal age to consume alcohol is age 21 in Texas. Minors who are caught consuming, purchasing, or attempting to purchase alcohol under the age of 21 could potentially face underage drinking charges.
Consumption of Alcohol by a Minor is a Class C misdemeanor offense. Penalties include:
- Mandatory participation in an alcohol awareness class
- 8 to 40 hours of community service
- A driver’s license suspension ranging from 30 to 180 days
For repeat offenders that are age 17 years of age and older, the fines and penalties significantly increase and may include:
- A fine ranging from $250 to $2,000
- A driver’s license suspension for up to one year
- 180 days in the county jail
It is also important to understand that any adult who is caught providing alcohol to a minor may find themselves in serious legal trouble and have to pay steep fines in addition to having their driver’s license suspended.
What Happens if a Minor is Charged With DWI?
Texas has strict zero-tolerance laws that pertain to minors being charged with DWI. If a minor is driving a motor vehicle and found to have any detectable amount of alcohol in their system, they are considered to be driving while under the influence of alcohol by a minor (DUIA by a minor).
Unlike those of legal age, minors can be charged with DUIA even if their blood alcohol content (BAC) registers as 0.02%. In easy-to-understand terms, this means even consuming half of a beer may be enough to cause them to be charged.
As a result, the police can arrest the minor for DUIA. If the breath or blood test reveals alcohol in the minor’s system, their driver’s license can be suspended for up to 60 days for the first offense. A second repeat offense will garner a 120-day license suspension, and a third offense will cause a loss of driving privileges for 180 days. In addition, their vehicle can be towed.
Furthermore, a minor who is charged with DUIA can also be ordered to take an alcohol awareness class, as well as perform community service hours. It should also be stated that DUIA charges may also depend on the age of the minor.
If your minor age child has been charged with DUIA, you need to obtain legal representation in order to protect their future. Many colleges and universities are reluctant to allow individuals convicted of offenses related to underage drinking.
What is Constructive Possession?
Minors are considered to be in constructive possession of alcohol when alcohol is readily available to them. It must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the minor was in possession, ownership, or control of an alcoholic beverage.
Minors are permitted to be in close proximity to alcohol that belongs to another individual. However, the law stipulates that the minor is not permitted to hold, touch, attempt to purchase, transport, or consume any alcohol.
There are also strict rules that apply to a minor being in a car where alcohol is present. One little-known rule is that a minor may be charged with constructive possession even if the alcohol was locked in the trunk of the car. If the minor controls the keys, they could very well be charged with constructive possession.
The laws that surround Constructive Possession can be exceedingly difficult to understand on your own. One of the best steps that you can take to protect your child is to hire a qualified alcohol defense attorney who can fight to protect your child’s rights and reputation.
Why Should I Hire Your Law Firm to Help With My Child’s Defense?
The Greening Law Group has a proven track record of obtaining positive results for minors who have been charged with alcohol-related offenses. We understand that, as a parent, you only want the best for your child. We are passionately committed to obtaining an outcome that is fully favorable to you.
We recognize that often minors can make poor choices when it comes to choices they make regarding alcohol. We do not believe that an error in judgment should haunt a person for the rest of their life.
If your child has been charged with an alcohol-related offense, you need to seek an experienced criminal defense attorney in College Station who can help preserve your child’s future and reputation.
Contact us by calling 979-779-2000 and ask to schedule a free consultation. We will be happy to discuss your case and answer any questions that you may have. You may also reach us through our website or via email.