Many people consider underage drinking inevitable in today’s peer-pressured, social media fueled culture. However, many underage drinkers and their guardians do not consider the long-term impact that receiving “just a ticket’ for underage drinking can have on their future. Although pleading guilty may seem to be the easiest and least costly method to “put it behind you,” an underage drinking conviction could result in a Drivers License suspension and a fine. A conviction stays on your drivers license record, which can negatively impact your ability to find employment, schooling and associated scholarships. It will likely raise your automobile insurance rate, too.
Penalties for Underage Drinking include Fines/Forfeitures of $249.00 for a 1st offense and a $375.00 fine for 2nd offense and higher fines for subsequent offenses. The Driver’s License Suspension for a 1st offense could be 30 days and as long as 90 days. The 2nd offense conviction could result in losing your Drivers License for a year.
It is important to consult with an attorney that has experience with underage drinking, drug and alcohol related offenses to understand your rights and other options that may be available to minimize the long-term impact. An experienced defense attorney may be able negotiate with the District Attorney to have your charge reduced to a lesser, non-alcohol related charge. And some Wisconsin counties participate in the Underage Drinking Deferred Prosecution / Accountability (DPA) Program that may remove a conviction from your record altogether.
Contact the Law Offices of Andrew C. Ladd, LLC for help with an underage drinking charge in Wisconsin today.