It is illegal for minors (under 21 yrs of age) to drink alcohol. Pennsylvania has a specific statute directed at underage drivers who are caught driving under the influence. Pennsylvania applies a “No Tolerance” policy to minors and lowers the Blood Alcohol Content (BAC), making it easier for minors to receive higher penalties if any alcohol is found in their system.
Underage drivers convicted of D.U.I. are given the same sentences as adults who are convicted of D.U.I. at a “high level.” A minor can have his driver’s license suspended for three months or up to one year, and may be fined, if ANY amount of alcohol is found in his system. For a first offense, a minor charged with and convicted of a DUI with a BAC of 0.02% or higher may go to jail for 48 hours, pay a fine of $500 – $5000, attend alcohol highway safety school, and will be forced to comply with any drug and alcohol treatment. A second, third, or more offenses carry longer jail sentences with higher fines. Also the Commonwealth does not have to prove that the minor was impaired.
If a minor is caught driving under the influence before he or she earns a driver’s license, Pennsylvania will make him or her serve a license suspension after they get the license.
If a minor is charged with underage drinking, even if they were not driving, he or she can receive a driver’s license suspension.
If a minor is charged with a DUI, you need an attorney who is experienced working with District Attorneys to help them avoid harsh penalties.
We offer a no cost, no obligation review of your minor’s DUI or criminal law matter via a short telephone consult or an email reply. If both you and our firm agree that legal representation is required, an in-office appointment will be scheduled.