When first learning your child has been arrested for a DUI, your first reaction is probably fear followed swiftly by anger then landing on worry. We understand. Even a minor in possession Texas charge can have long-lasting consequences for the rest of their life. We’re here to help protect your child and, most importantly, their future.
Minor in Possession Texas
Minor in Possession Texas citations are issued to juveniles in possession, ownership, or control of an alcoholic beverage. Typically, these citations are issued in mass to college students. So much so that most public colleges have resources to educate students of their rights regarding MIP citations. Minors are at risk of a MIP citation anywhere alcohol is present; they do not need to be indulging to receive a MIP. While a minor can legally be the proximity of alcohol that belongs to another person, they can receive a MIP for any of the following:
- holding alcohol
- touching alcohol
- attempting to purchase alcohol
- consuming alcohol
- having ANY contact with alcohol
Additionally, minors may receive a constructive minor in possession charge when:
- alcohol is in the car (car seat, floor, or trunk) in which the driver is a minor
- a minor sits at a table with several people drinking from a pitcher of beer with scattered cups
- a minor uses a beer can as a spittoon for tobacco juice
- a minor gathers empty beer cans and cups to discard as trash
- a minor holds a friend’s beer while they put on their jacket
If your child received a Minor in Possession Texas citation, our criminal lawyers are here to help. We will fight for deferred adjudication to avoid a final conviction and keep it off your child’s record.
What is a DUI?
Often DUI and DWI are used interchangeably. Not in Texas. Texas is a DWI state with corresponding legislation referring to “driving while intoxicated.” A DUI charge is a special charge reserved for minors who drive under the influence of alcohol. Because it is illegal for anyone under 21 to consume alcohol, the 0.08% BAC is not applicable; any alcohol detection is illegal. According to the Texas Penal Code, “a minor commits an offense if the minor operates a motor vehicle in a public place, or a watercraft while having any detectable amount of alcohol in the minor’s system.”
However, a minor can be charged with a DUI and DWI if the minor also exceeds the legal BAC limit.
Potential Juvenile DUI Consequences
The State breaks down applicable consequences for minors both under 17, 17+ and repeat offenders. They are as follows:
- 1st Offense Under 17: Class C misdemeanor. Possible penalties include:
- __20-40 hours of mandatory community service
- __up to a $500 fine
- __up to a 60-day license suspension
- __a mandatory alcohol education class
- __parents of the minor to attend alcohol educational course with child
- 1st Offense Ages 17 to 20: Class B misdemeanor. Possible penalties include:
- __up to a $2K fine
- __72 hours to 180 days in jail
- __1-year license suspension
- 2nd or Subsequent Offense: Class B misdemeanors. Possible penalties include:
- __up to a $2K fine
- __up to 180 days in jail
- __1-year license suspension
Implied Consent to a Blood Alcohol Testing
By obtaining a Texas Driver’s License, you give implied consent for drug and alcohol testing. The police may ask your child for explicit consent for a breath or blood test even if you, their parent, are not present. If they refuse, the State can automatically suspend their license for a fixed period:
- 1st Refusal: 180-day license suspension
- 2nd or Subsequent Refusal: 2 year license suspension
Consequentially, if your child refuses, the officers may place them under arrest. Generally, the arresting officer will seek a warrant from a judge for a blood test. To do so, the officer will demonstrate probable cause. We will argue if the police had the requisite probable cause and whether the Court should admit any resulting evidence at trial.
Collateral Consequences for a DUI
After receiving a DUI arrest or charge, it will appear on your child’s criminal record. A criminal record could affect their applications for higher education and financial aid. It could also jeopardize any admittance or financial aid that has already been extended. Additionally, DUI charge could bar them from entering certain professions. When possible, we will fight for dismissal of charges or deferred adjudication; so your child is not held back by a mistake they made as a minor.
Seek Representation Immediately
Many DUI charges hang on faulty evidence, such as numbers provided by defective and untrustworthy breathalyzer tests. Also, the arresting police officer’s subjective view of your child’s driving may be inaccurate. At AZ Law Firm, we believe everyone deserve a second chance, most of all our children. We are here to help safeguard your child’s future. Give us a call to schedule a free consultation, and we’ll begin strategizing your child’s defense.
To find out how we can help you, contact our criminal defense attorneys at 512-400-7070 or send us a message for minor in possession Texas and juvenile DUI defense. We will schedule an initial client consultation to review your case details and lay out a game plan for your minor in possession Texas case. AZ Law Firm will pursue the legal action necessary to secure the fairest possible outcome for you and your loved ones.
- evaluating and explaining to you the pros and cons of your individual case
- discussing with you any available options and our proposed strategies as it relates to your case
- providing guidance and recommendations regarding any proposed settlement offer
- quickly and effectively communicating with you during each step of the process so that you are not left in the dark
- taking your case solely on a contingent fee basis
- and aggressively protecting and defending your rights
We understand times are tough and that there probably hasn’t been a tougher time in your life. Although we could get away with charging exuberant amounts, we prefer not to as we are a law firm by the people, for the people. We do not want you to worry about whether you can afford to hire an attorney to protect and defend your rights. Call us and be surprised at the quality you receive compared to what other law firms will quote you!
Accordingly, the attorneys at AZ Law Firm will always provide you with a free initial consultation. During this initial consultation, our criminal lawyers will evaluate your case, inform you of any legal options that may be available, and allow you to ask any questions that you may have. AZ Law Firm offers affordable rates for all our clients and will work with you on payment plans. Our firm accepts checks, debit cards, and most major credit cards to cover the costs of your legal representation.