Underage DUI Charges May Be Filed for Low Alcohol Concentrations
July 2, 2018
Some minors who are under the age of 21 in Florida may be surprised that they can be charged with a DUI when they have very little alcohol in their systems. Like all of the other states, Florida has a zero-tolerance law in place that establishes a much lower blood alcohol concentration limit for minors than for older drivers.
Drivers who are ages 21 or older are able to drive as long as their blood alcohol concentrations are below 0.08 percent. For drivers who are younger than age 21, federal law has mandated that states establish limits of 0.02 percent or lower.
In Florida, the zero-tolerance law for minors is set at 0.02 percent. This means that a young person may be unable to drive after consuming a single drink. Minors are prohibited from purchasing alcohol in Florida. Since they are not supposed to drink when they are younger than 21, they are also not supposed to drink and drive. One of the reasons for the stricter laws for minors is that alcohol is involved in fatal accidents in 35 percent of cases involving young drivers between the ages of 15 and 20.
Minors may be charged with DUIs even if they are not intoxicated under the law. People who are facing underage drunk driving charges might benefit by getting help from criminal defense attorneys. The lawyers may analyze their clients’ cases to determine the most appropriate defense strategies to take. In some cases, the lawyers may challenge the admissibility of the evidence against their clients if the manner in which the police stopped the cars or conducted the investigations was improper. Attorneys may also work to secure favorable pleas to lesser charges or fight for their clients’ rights through jury trials.