DuPage County Underage Drinking and Drugs Attorneys
Protecting Teenagers from Derailing Their Future
While many high school and college students use alcohol, marijuana and other drugs, Illinois has strict laws that apply to minors who ingest or possess alcohol or drugs. While the juvenile system is designed to focus on rehabilitation rather than punishment, someone under 21 who is arrested for being a minor in possession (MIP) of alcohol can face a criminal charge and loss of driving privileges. If your son or daughter is convicted of an underage drinking or drug offense, the conviction also can impact his or her college and employment. The consequences can be particularly damaging if the individual facing charges is over 18 because this may result in a permanent criminal record rather than a juvenile offense.
At Ramsell & Kunowski, L.L.C., our experienced DuPage County juvenile defense attorneys have been representing minors charged with underage drinking and drug offenses for over 30 years. Although many teens consider attending parties with kegs of beer, marijuana and other illicit substances to be a rite of passage, a conviction can derail a promising future. Our attorneys work diligently to protect our clients from being saddled with a criminal record and jail time. Our Illinois criminal defense law firm has received national media attention from ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, COURT-TV and other major media outlets. Our law firm has garnered a reputation for using innovative defense strategies to obtain positive outcomes in the most challenging cases. The AVVO website, which rates attorneys from coast to coast, has awarded our criminal defense firm a perfect 10.0 rating.
Drug and Alcohol Offenses Involving Minors
If you are not at least 21 years old, Illinois law makes it illegal for you to possess or imbibe alcohol in any area open to the public. There are exceptions to this prohibition that might provide an effective defense strategy. Underage drinking is not illegal if alcohol is dispensed, consumed or possessed as part of a religious observance or under the supervision of a parent or other person standing in the shoes of the parent in the home.
When a minor is arrested for drinking or possessing alcohol, the arrestee can be charged with a Class A Misdemeanor. A motor vehicle does not need to be involved in the offense for a minor to be charged under this provision. A conviction can result in penalties that include up to a year in jail and a maximum fine up to $2,500. The judge may also impose other penalties that include restitution and community service.
Our DuPage County criminal defense attorneys also analyze evidence and law enforcement procedures, so we can seek to have the charges dismissed or to obtain a not guilty verdict at trial. We might also pursue options that minimize the impact of your punishment, including work release, conditional discharge, home detention, supervision and probation.
Possessing, Carrying or Transporting of Alcohol in a Vehicle
Illinois law prohibits the transportation, possession or carrying of alcohol in a vehicle unless it is sealed in the original container. When a minor engages in such conduct, he or she will face a driver’s license suspension.
Use of a Fake ID in DuPage County
When a minor presents fake identification to acquire alcohol, this conduct constitutes a Class A Misdemeanor. The penalties include a minimum of 25 hours of community service and a minimum fine of $500.
DuPage County Drug and Alcohol Offenses by Minors
Our DuPage County underage drinking defense lawyers represent young people who make mistakes that could haunt their lives for decades. We invite you to call us today at 630-256-8001 or to send us an email to schedule your free consultation in our conveniently located office in Naperville. Ramsell & Kunowski, L.L.C. also has offices in Wheaton and St. Charles or Rolling Meadows by appointment.