Underage Drinking in DC

Mark Rollins Criminal Law, Misrepresentation of Age

Underage Drinking in DC

Underage Drinking in DC

Pursuant to the law in the District of Columbia, no person who is under 21 years of age shall purchase, attempt to purchase, possess, or drink an alcoholic beverage in the District.  It is a misdemeanor.  The legal age to consume alcohol beverages in Washington, D.C. is 21 years old.  Obvious if the individual is over the age its not minors drinking.  However, with all colleges and universities in the District of Columbia – Students and parents need to know that DC does not underage drinking lightly.   Furthermore, if the underage drinker is behind the wheel the penalty is even greater than person over the age of 21.

Underage Drinking Penalties in DC

The maximum penalty for underage drinking is 90 days suspension of your driver’s license and/or $300 fine. That is a separate and different charge from Underage DUI. It is illegal for a person under 21 years old in the District of Columbia to operate a motor vehicle with a BAC above a 0.04%. Maximum penalties are the same as those who are over 21 with a BAC above a 0.08%. For a first time offender, the maximum penalty is 180 days in jail and/or $1000 fine. If BAC is between 0.20 and 0.25, mandatory minimum jail time is 10 days. If the BAC is above 0.25 , mandatory minimum jail time is 15 days. Finally if BAC is above 0.30, mandatory minimum jail time is 20 days.When an underage person is found guilty of drunk driving, they will also face consequences that affect both their current and future social lives and careers. If convicted of underage DUI, you will have to list the offense on college applications which could affect your admission into the college depending upon their requirements. If convicted of underage DUI while already attending college, you may face additional penalties from the school, especially if you are engaged in a specialized area of study.

Expungement and/or Sealing the Underage Drinker

In the District of Columbia unlike other jurisdiction, young people who are charged as Adults can still have their record sealed as long as they have not attained the age of 21.   There is a lot at risk when an underage person, especially a student, is charged with a DUI in Washington, D.C. . Do not place yourself at a higher risk of being convicted; call a DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible to give yourself the best chance of beating your charges.  Read are other article regarding misrepresentation of age.