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A first offense DUI is serious business for a minor

On Behalf of | Oct 29, 2019 | Firm News

You knew that your children liked to go out and drink. As a parent of teenagers, you also knew that they could get in trouble with the law if they got caught. Despite that, you felt it was safer to allow them to drink with supervision.

For the most part, they stayed out of trouble by drinking when adults allowed them to do so. For example, during one of your summer parties, you allowed your children to have beers with the rest of the family.

You were never expecting your children to go out to a party and to drive home drunk. They knew better, and you had always been clear that you would happily come to pick them up instead of having them drive home while intoxicated. Now, they face serious charges, and you need to know what to expect.

This DUI case maybe complex

When someone under the age of 21 drinks, they are already breaking the law unless they are doing so in an exempted situation. Colorado has a zero-tolerance law that will result in your children being charged with an “Underage Drinking and Driving Offense,” or UDD. This offense applies to those who have a blood alcohol content between .02% and .05%. If their BAC is .05% or higher, then they will face the same administrative penalties as an adult.

What kinds of penalties will your child face?

Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) has a few different penalties. For a first offense, your children could go to jail for up to 180 days. There are fines to pay of up to $500, and they may need to perform public service for 24 to 48 hours.

A first DUI (driving under the influence) has harsher penalties including between five days and one year in jail. Fines extend up to $1,000, and your children may need to perform up to 96 hours of public service.

Will your children’s license be revoked?

It is likely that at least the child who was driving will have their license revoked or suspended. There may be a possibility of having a license granted to them for the purpose of going to school or work, which is something to discuss with your attorney.

It is not easy for a child or children who are convicted of these offenses, so working with an attorney is a smart choice. Doing so may help prevent some more severe actions from being taken against your children.

Photo of Attorney Phillip A. Geigle