Posts Tagged Misdemeanor

Underage Consumption: What a Headache.

As most folks should know, if you are under the age of 21 you are not allowed to consume alcohol in Tennessee (and all other states in the U.S.). In fact, an underage person who has been drinking or is in possession of alcohol could find themselves in trouble not only criminally, but also academically. The days of college kids getting a “slap on the wrist” for underage consumption are gone. Getting caught underage drinking, at a bar or elsewhere, and being asked to leave/safely get home is no longer the norm. More and more underage individuals are being arrested for drinking underage and the consequences are much more serious than just a headache from a bit too much to drink.

Under Tennessee law, an offense of Underage Consumption is codified in T.C.A. § 1-3-113. The code sets out that if one is underage (under 21 years of age) and that person is arrested or cited for drinking/possessing alcohol (among several things), the punishment can be up to 11 months and 29 days in jail, if convicted. This means the offense of Underage Consumption is a Class A Misdemeanor, the most serious class of Misdemeanor Offense in Tennessee. Additionally, the individual faces up to a $2,500 dollar fine. In some cases, the person could lose their driving privileges up to one year.

Aside from the legal punishments, if the individual is in school (high school or college) and charged with Underage Consumption of Alcohol, they can also face academic consequences (such as: probation, loss of scholarship, or expulsion). Depending on the circumstances, the individual’s academic record could be tainted and could lead to difficulties graduating or being accepted into a competitive graduate school program.

As the reader can tell, drinking underage can lead to more than just a headache from the hangover. This offense can lead to major difficulties for that individuals’ future (criminally and academically).

A knowledgeable and well-versed lawyer may be able to help not only avoid a conviction for this offense but be able to erase it from the individual’s public criminal history. The lawyers at Oberman and Rice are willing and able to help with such a situation. The Oberman and Rice Law Firm is located only a few minutes from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and deals with many of these types of alcohol violations (and academic situations). Our lawyers are available 24 hours a day if you or a loved one needs help and/or information to preserve their future because of an underage drinking charge. The Oberman and Rice Law Firm may be reached by calling (865) 249-7200.

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