Texas has a “zero tolerance” policy when it comes to underage drinking. Regardless of how much alcohol you have consumed, if you are under 21 years of age, you could face criminal charges and suspension of your driver’s license after being charged with drinking and driving.
The Austin, TX underage drinking lawyers at Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C., have handled drunk driving cases for minors throughout the state, including those in Hays, Bastrop, Caldwell, Burnet, Comal, Travis and Williamson counties.
If you or someone in your family has been charged with underage drinking, call us today at (512) 476-4873 or contact us through our online form. We will defend your rights and reputation.
Texas Underage Drinking Law
A charge for underage drinking and driving can carry serious consequences. According to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, it is illegal for a person under 21 to operate a motor vehicle in a public place while having ANY detectable amount of alcohol in their system. On September 1, 2009, that law was expanded to include boats and other watercraft.
The consequences for the minor on the first offense of driving under the influence of alcohol include: a Class C misdemeanor charge, punishable by a fine of up to $500; alcohol awareness education; 20 to 40 hours of mandatory community service; and 60 days’ driver’s license suspension.
A second offense brings these consequences: a Class C misdemeanor charge, punishable by a fine of up to $500; attendance at an alcohol awareness class, if the judge decides that is appropriate; 40 to 60 hours of mandatory community service; and a 120 days’ driver’s license suspension.
Following a third offense, the minor’s driver’s license is suspended for 180 days and an occupational license may not be obtained for the entire suspension period. If the minor is 17 years of age or older, the fine increases to $500 to $2,000, and jail time can include up to 180 days.
The minor’s intoxication does not need to be substantiated through proof of a loss of physical or mental functions or a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08. The minor can lose his or her license based solely upon the officer’s perception that the child had consumed alcohol.
A charge for drinking and driving can stay on a teenager’s record, affecting his or her employment and college opportunities.
Contact Us Today
If your child has been charged with DWI or underage drinking, call the Texas drunk driving attorneys at Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C., today at (512) 476-4873 or contact us through our online form. We have 45 years of experience representing clients in Austin, TX and the surrounding communities, including: Travis County (Creedmoor, Elroy, Manor, Pflugerville); Williamson County (Cedar Park, Georgetown, Liberty Hill, Florence, Leander, Round Rock, Taylor); Hays County (Buda, Dripping Springs, Kyle, San Marcos, Wimberley); Bastrop County (Bastrope, Clearview, Elgin, Rockne, Smithville); Caldwell County (Lockhart, Luling); Burnet County (Bertram, Burnet, Marble Falls); and Comal County (Bulverde, Canyon Lake, Gruene, New Braunfels, Sattler, Startzville). We will defend your rights and reputation.