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Bucher Law Group, LLC

Can a Minor Be Charged with Drinking in a Bar?

 Posted on June 24, 2022 in Criminal Defense

Walworth County Criminal LawyerWhile the legal drinking age in Wisconsin is 21, it is no secret that minors will break the law and consume alcohol. Many times, this drinking will be done at houses, parks, or other areas where the activity can occur discreetly. They may even try to drink at a bar or other establishment that serves alcohol with a fake ID. As a parent, it is best to know what the punishments for underage drinking and other juvenile crimes are, as well as the exceptions when underage drinking is allowed.

Penalties and Exceptions for Underage Drinking

If a minor is caught possessing or drinking alcohol and are between the ages of 17 and 20, they will face an underage drinking charge. Penalties for a first-time underage drinking conviction can include $250 to $500 in fines, a driver’s license suspension of between 30 and 90 days, and participating in community service work or another supervised work program. Minors under the age of 17 will face similar penalties, but will be charged as a juvenile. For both underage and juvenile offenders, trying to purchase alcohol with a fake ID will also result in fines, driver’s license suspension, and community service. Penalties for both underage and juvenile offenders increase with each subsequent conviction. Enrollment in a court-approved alcohol abuse education program may also be part of the sentence for any of the charges.

In Wisconsin, there are some exceptions both to entering an establishment that serves alcohol as well as drinking it on the premises. If the parent, guardian, or spouse of the person is present, a person under 21 can enter the premises of an establishment that is licensed to serve alcohol and can possess or consume alcohol. However, this permission is at the discretion of the establishment, and they can choose not to serve underage people.

Other exceptions cover only an underage person being present in a bar. This allows for workers over the age of 18 who are supervised by someone over 21 and musicians or other performers at a concert or event to be present without the fear of being charged, but they are not allowed to consume alcohol.

Waukesha Defense Lawyer for Underage Drinking

If your son or daughter has been charged with underage or juvenile drinking or any other crime, you can trust the Milwaukee County attorney for juvenile crime at Bucher Law Group, LLC to protect their future. We will help you to fight the charges and focus on rehabilitation and education rather than harsh punishments. Call us for a free consultation today at 262-303-4916




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