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Adults Under 21 Face Consequences if Caught Drinking in Wisconsin

Posted on in Criminal Defense

WI defense lawyerMany people find it ironic that a young adult can serve in the army, go to college, and drive a car well before they are legally old enough to buy alcohol. For many young adults, especially those who are already in college or who have moved out of their parents’ home and begun living independently, following Wisconsin’s laws about underage drinking may feel unnecessary, especially when alcohol is so easily available to youngsters who seek it.

Nevertheless, the law is the law, and kids who make the mistake of drinking underage are often caught. They may then face serious consequences that they never imagined. A young adult charged with underage alcohol consumption or a DUI may fear for their reputation, their ability to get a job, and their criminal record. Fortunately, especially if an underage drinking charge is a youth’s first run-in with the law, there are options for building a good defense; with a Wisconsin criminal defense attorney, second chances are possible.

Underage Drinking in Wisconsin

The only time someone under age 21 can legally consume alcohol in Wisconsin is when he or she is with a parent, guardian, or spouse who is the legal drinking age. This can include consumption at home or at a bar, although a bar can refuse to serve alcohol to someone under 21 even if they are with a parent, guardian, or spouse.

For everyone else, the state has a zero-tolerance policy for alcohol consumption until 21 years of age, especially while operating a motor vehicle. Children under age 17 are generally prosecuted as juveniles for underage alcohol consumption, while those aged 17 to 20 are prosecuted with an adult underage drinking charge. Penalties may include fines, driver's license suspensions, and community service or substance abuse classes and subsequent charges in a single year substantially increases the penalties.

Some people try to get around the state’s prohibition on underage drinking by using a fake ID. Even if you do not get caught with alcohol, using a fake ID is a crime that is treated seriously; penalties include fines, driver’s license suspension, and community service. Making or selling a fake ID is treated even more seriously, and giving your ID to someone after you turn 21 can get you in serious trouble.

Contact an Ozaukee County, WI Criminal Defense Lawyer

If your child has gotten caught and charged with underage drinking, the first thing to know is that this is a common mistake that young adults make and that, with the help of a Walworth County, WI criminal defense attorney, this mistake does not have to define your child’s future. Call Bucher Law Group, LLC today at 262-303-4916 to begin the process of building a solid defense case for your child. We offer free consultations.




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