Here in this blog, we’ve paid a lot of attention recently to the topic of DUI: the laws, the penalties, the substances, the basics and beyond. But so far, we have not addressed some drivers who are greatly at risk for DUI-related offenses. These are drivers under the age of 21. And those drivers are legally underage to drink in Arizona.
State law is quite clear in terms of underage drinking while driving, Arizona is known as a “zero tolerance” state. Anyone under the legal drinking age of 21 who is found to have any amount of alcohol in his/her system will be subject to DUI charges. Even if they are not found to be impaired while driving, the actual consumption of alcohol is the deciding factor. Penalties are severe. For a first offense: 24 hours in jail, over $1000 in fines, and license suspension. For a second conviction within seven years of the first: 30-90 days in jail, fines up to$2500, and another license suspension.
It gets even worse for under-21 drivers who are convicted. Most likely they will lose their auto insurance, and they will likely face much higher rates and restrictions if they reapply. They may face other charges relating to alcohol possession, too, such as the presence of underage passengers.
I hope that all parents will do their best to educate their young drivers about alcohol consumption, as well as about the risks of driving while impaired. In reality, though, people of all ages make choices. Sometimes I believe it is human nature to want to try things one probably shouldn’t. However, we must all learn from our experiences.
The law can be a lot tougher than parents, and young drivers can face severe consequences if they are convicted of an alcohol-related DUI. At Zachary Law Group we offer a FREE 30-minute case evaluation to answer questions about DUI laws and how they can affect drivers of any age. If you, or someone you know who is under 21 has a DUI-related issue, please give us a call. This isn’t a parent or a friend speaking: it’s someone with a lot of DUI-related legal experience, ready to help you “Zach-It”! Our number is 1-855-Zach-law.