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Underage Drinking Has Strict Consequences in Illinois While parents do everything in their power to keep their children safe, many young teens make the reckless decision to engage in underage drinking. Underage drinking can come with serious health risks, in large part due to the fact that most teens do not have the maturity to safely consume alcohol. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 4,000 underage youth die each year as a result of underage drinking. Outside of the inherent health risks of underage drinking, the consumption of alcohol can result in serious legal consequences for a minor

Alcohol Laws for Minors in Illinois 

Recognizing the health risks associated with underage drinking, the legal consequences of drinking underage are severe in the state of Illinois. A minor that possesses, consumes, or purchases alcohol will face a six-month driver’s license suspension if convicted. A second conviction for a minor in possession will result in a one-year license suspension. The legal ramifications of drinking underage can be more severe if a minor uses a fake or fraudulent ID to obtain alcohol. Using someone else’s ID warrants a Class A misdemeanor charge and potentially up to one year in jail. If a minor is caught using a fraudulent ID (an ID manufactured by someone who is unaffiliated with the United States government) they could face a Class 4 felony charge. It is also important to understand the way in which an alcohol- or drug-related arrest can impact your child’s future. A serious conviction can impact their ability to get into prestigious universities and even impact their ability to secure employment. 

Driving Under the Influence 

In Illinois, the Zero Tolerance Policy will result in an automatic suspension of driving privileges, if the minor’s blood alcohol content is over 0.00. In other words, even if a minor would be under the legal limit for an adult, they can still face legal consequences for driving after consuming alcohol. A first-time offender will face a mandatory three-month suspension. If your child is convicted of a DUI, they will face Class A misdemeanor charges, up to one year in prison, and fines as high as $2,500. A convicted minor will also face a license revocation period of two years and will not be eligible for driving relief in the first year. 

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Concerns with Underage Drinking and Underage DUIEvery parent worries about their child, so discussing drinking and driving from a parental perspective can be a difficult topic. While the dangers of drinking and driving cannot be understated, the legal ramifications of a drinking and driving conviction can be monumental. There are a number of ways in which a minor can face legal trouble as it pertains to alcohol. Below, we will look at Illinois’ laws on underage drinking, transportation of alcohol, and drinking and driving. If your child has been charged with an underage DUI, it is time to seek out legal assistance. 

Underage Drinking Laws in Illinois 

In the state of Illinois, there are a number of laws in place to discourage minors from consuming alcohol. While it is highly unlikely that a minor will face jail time for an alcohol possession charge, they will face the consequences of:

  • Having a Class A misdemeanor on their record
  • Fines as high as $2,500
  • Suspended driving privileges

Minors can face much more severe criminal charges if they are caught using a fake id. If a minor is apprehended while using another person’s driver’s license or identification card, they will face a Class A misdemeanor charge. If a minor is caught in possession of a falsified Illinois state driver’s license or identification card, they will face felony charges and possible jail time. 

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How an Underage Drinking Charge Can Impact Your Child Every year, hundreds of thousands of American teens take part in illegal underage drinking. Outside of the obvious health concerns of underage drinking, it is important for parents to understand the ways in which an underage drinking arrest can potentially impact your child’s future. Depending on the severity of the charge, an alcohol-related arrest can lead to serious fines, impact your child’s advanced education opportunities, and even potentially lead to jail time. If your child is charged with an alcohol-related crime, it is time to speak with a knowledgeable and experienced legal professional. 

Underage Drinking Charges in Illinois

Recognizing the way in which the activity can impact a child’s health, underage drinking is punished harshly in the state of Illinois. If a minor is found in possession of alcohol, they will face a driver’s license suspension of at least three months. If a minor is apprehended while transporting alcohol in a motor vehicle, they can face fines as high as $1,000 (this fine also applies to other minors in the vehicle, not just the driver). The driver of the vehicle will face a mandatory one-year license revocation period. While the consequences of drinking alcohol as a minor are significant, the legal ramifications of providing a minor with alcohol are much more severe. If you are charged with providing alcohol to a minor, you could face fines as high as $2,500 and a misdemeanor charge. It should be noted that there are a number of factors that can elevate the misdemeanor charge to a felony.

Drinking and Driving Underage

In the state of Illinois, law enforcement officials are constantly on the lookout for inebriated drivers. The “zero tolerance” law states that minors are prohibited from operating motor vehicles with a blood alcohol content over 0.0. The first offense for violating the zero-tolerance policy comes with a three-month license suspension. If the minor refuses to use a breathalyzer test, the suspension will be increased to a six-month suspension. If the driver is over the age of 18, they can regain their driving privileges after serving 30 days of the suspension and obtaining a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID). If the driver is caught operating a vehicle without a BAIID, they will face Class 4 felony charges. If a minor’s blood alcohol content is over the legal limit of 0.08, they will face a two-year license revocation period and up to one year in prison. 

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Posted on in Underage DUI

Underage DUI Has Severe RamificationsBeing arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can be incredibly frightening. It does not take a legal professional to understand that a DUI conviction can come with significant legal consequences. The legal ramifications of a DUI conviction can be increasingly severe for drivers under the age of 21. If your child is arrested for driving while intoxicated, you need to act. Below, we will discuss some of the punishments of an underage DUI and how a quality legal team can help in the aftermath of an arrest. 

The Zero Tolerance Law

In Illinois, drivers under the age of 21 must abide by the Zero Tolerance Law. In short, the law states that a minor can face legal consequences for driving with any alcohol in their system, even if their blood alcohol content is below the legal limit of 0.08. In 2017, just under 400 drivers lost their driving privileges due to violating the state’s Zero Tolerance Law. A first violation of the law will result in an automatic six-month license suspension. 

The Legal Consequences of an Underage DUI

While violation of the Zero Tolerance Law will lead to loss of driving privileges, the consequences of a DUI conviction can be much more severe. Just like drivers of any age, a driver under the age of 21 will face a Class A misdemeanor charge, loss of driving privileges, and significant fines for having a blood alcohol concentration over the legal limit. Additionally, a driver under the age of 21 will face a two-year license revocation period for their first offense, twice the revocation period for a driver of legal drinking age. 

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How a DUI Conviction Can Impact a Driver Under the Age of 21 A charge of driving under the influence should never be taken lightly because the ramifications of a conviction can range from loss of driving privileges to potential jail-time. For drivers under the legal drinking age of 21, a DUI conviction can come with legal ramifications of increased severity. Alcohol is a leading risk factor in fatal car accidents among teen drivers, with more than 20 percent of all teen driving fatalities involving alcohol in some capacity. Because of this, law enforcement officials are constantly on the lookout for inebriated driving amongst teen drivers. If you or a member of your family have been arrested for intoxicated driving, it is time to seek out the assistance of a legal professional. 

The Legal Ramifications

In Illinois, underage drivers can be charged for simply driving with a blood alcohol content over 0.00. This state law is known as the zero-tolerance policy. According to the zero-tolerance policy:

  • An underage drinker’s first arrest with a blood alcohol content over 0.00 will result in a license suspension of six months; and
  • A second offense will result in a suspension of driving privileges for a two year period.

If your child is convicted of a DUI, they will face having a Class A misdemeanor on their criminal record. Not only will the conviction result in a two-year license revocation, but the charge could impact their ability to secure employment or be admitted to universities. Throughout 2017, a staggering 1,160 underage drivers in Illinois were arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If your child is facing a DUI charge, the first step you should take is consulting with an attorney you can trust.  

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