DUI Punishment For Underage Drivers
Many drivers under the legal drinking age find themselves getting behind the wheel while under the influence. Since young people have a tendency to binge drink and may not realize the repercussions of drinking and driving, these situations often lead to dangerous accidents that are sometimes fatal. While the law for underage drivers still applies in terms of officially being charged with DUI, the penalties may be a bit different. Here are some examples of what young drivers may face if they receive a DUI.
Losing Your Driving Privileges
One of the first things a judge will do when they encounter drivers who are convicted of a DUI charge is to suspend their license. This definitely applies to drivers of the legal drinking age, but it also applies to those under the legal age as well. Your license may be suspended for several months to years, depending on your state's laws and the judge's final decision. If you have a job, you could possibly be granted a restricted license that lets you go to and from work, but be aware that if you're caught driving outside of the assigned hours and areas you're permitted to drive, you could face stiff penalties.
Alcohol Treatment And Driving Classes
For those who get caught driving while intoxicated, a mandatory alcohol treatment class is typically recommended. You'll be assigned a time and place to attend these classes as well as a set number of hours you must complete them by. In addition to the alcohol class, you'll most likely have to go to driver's education classes so you can understand the rules of the road and learn to become a more responsible driver. Community service is also a common recommendation, particularly for young drivers. All of these requirements must be completed within the set timeframe, or else you could face a longer suspension time of your license and maybe even jail time. Jail is not a common sentence for underage drivers; however, some states have stricter laws that could land you in jail for anywhere from a day to several months even if you're underage.
For young people who are just starting out in life, a DUI charge on your record can have serious impacts on your future. This charge could prevent you from finding gainful employment and could also affect you getting into certain colleges. If you happen to injure or even kill someone while driving drunk, you will have to cope with this scenario and the outcome for the rest of your life. Understanding how serious driving drunk is at a young age can prevent drivers from getting behind the wheel when they've had too much to drink and can not only save lives, but also your bright future. Contact a DUI attorney like one from Hart Law Offices, PC for more info.