Getting pulled over by the police, treated like a criminal, and being arrest for a DUI can be a terrifying experience. It is even worse for underage drivers. If you or your child was arrested for an underage DUI, you probably want to just forget about the whole thing, and do whatever you can to put it in the past. But before you think about pleading guilty, or making some other deal, you need to know what the consequences can be for a young person's driving record, criminal record, and license to drive. Contact me for a free consultation, and we can discuss your case and all your options, to make sure you get treated fairly.
Underage DUI Arrest
Many people are unaware that underage drivers are held to a higher standard when it comes to blood alcohol content levels. BAC is tested through breath or blood or even urine tests, to show how much alcohol is in the driver's body. For most drivers, a BAC of 0.08% will be a per se violation of driving under the influence. However, for person's under the age of 21, they shall not drive with a BAC of 0.02% or more at any time within three hours after driving. This is treated as a misdemeanor and a conviction will result in a criminal record.
All states have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to underage drinking and driving. This is intended to discourage underage drinking. Even though, in some cases, such as on private property with parental permission, a person under 21 may be allowed to consume alcohol, they will not be able to drive until they are fully sober.
Under 21 Driver's License Consequences
More than 0.02%, but less than 0.08% BAC:
Violation of the zero tolerance limit, but with a BAC of less than 0.08%, will result in a six-month suspended driver's license. In addition, a driver will have to complete community service work, pay fines, and attend Alcohol Risk Reduction School. After waiting out the license suspension period, completing DDS requirements and paying an additional fee, the driver may have their license reinstated. However, the DUI will remain on their driving record.
More than 0.08%:
An underage driver with a BAC of higher than 0.08%, will have their license suspended for one year. In addition, even an underage driver will face a minimum of 24 hours in prison. They will also have to complete additional community service work, pay more in fines, and attend Alcohol Risk Reduction School.
Second Underage DUI:
With a second underage DUI, the penalties will be similar to an over-21 driver's second DUI, and are much more serious. This includes a minimum of 3 days in prison, more community service, increased fines, and a three-year driver's license suspension.
Experienced DUI Lawyer for Underage Drivers in Atlanta
If you or a loved one has been arrested for underage driving under the influence in Atlanta, you have to act quickly to make sure you are not permanently harmed by losing your license and being convicted of a criminal offense. You only have 10 days from the date of arrest to challenge an administrative driver's license suspension. Call my office today, and I will make a formal hearing request, and represent you so that you can keep your license. We can discuss your options and defense strategies to fight the charges against you, and make sure you are treated fairly.