Underage DUI in Las Vegas
In underage DUI, the defendant is actually breaking two laws, one is of course driving under the influence, and the other is underage drinking since drinking is illegal to anyone below the age of 21.
Underage DUI Legal Definition
A person is charged with underage drunk driving if they:
- Drove a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs;
- Are under the age of 21.
The allowable blood alcohol content (BAC) when driving is different for adults compared to people below 21. Adults are permitted to drive vehicles as long as their BAC is less than 0.8 while anyone under the age of 21 can only drive if their BAC is less than 0.2, even if it does not impair their driving.
This is in part because of the zero tolerance policy in Nevada. This is aimed to both promote highway safety and penalize underage drinking.
Criminal or Juvenile Court depending on age
Depending on the age of the defendant and the severity of the crime, they may be tried in juvenile or criminal court. Children under the age of 18 may be tried in juvenile court if they are only charged with misdemeanor DUI/DWI. For felony driving while intoxicated, they may be tried in criminal court and receive the full penalties as if they are adults. People between 18 to 20 will be charged in criminal court.
Penalties of Underage DUI
- Driver’s license will be suspended for at least 90 days after the verdict;
- May be ordered to pay fine;
- Depending on the severity, they may face jail time or be held in a juvenile suspension center;
- DUI classes or treatment programs, which will cost money;
They may clear the underage DUI charge from their criminal records only after 7 years.
Underage DUI Defense Lawyer
A drunken driving lawyer can make the difference between getting a guilty or not guilty verdict. Hire DUI defense lawyer if you have been charged with under age DUI. This will give you a higher chance of getting the charges reduced or having the entire case dismissed. You can view his proven track record of results.