Alcohol Offenses

In the State of Minnesota, it is a crime for a young adult under the age of 21 to consume or possess alcohol. However, the crime doesn’t just apply to teenagers that purchase alcohol. People who sell or serve alcohol to minors in Minnesota can also face serious consequences under the law.

Alcohol offenses carry serious consequences such as steep fines, license suspensions and imprisonment. Whether you have been charged with DWI, Possession of Alcohol by a Minor, or another alcohol offense, you need an experienced criminal defense lawyer that can help you through this difficult time.

While you may feel scared and overwhelmed, it is important to not go unrepresented. Minnesota alcohol offense lawyer James Blumberg at James Blumberg Law can create a strong defense strategy and protect your rights.

Alcohol Offense Lawyer in Apple Valley, Minnesota

If you have been charged with an alcohol-related offense in Apple Valley, Minnesota, contact James Blumberg Law to secure the dedicated legal counsel you need. James Blumberg at James Blumberg Law is a criminal defense attorney who has more than a decade representing clients accused of DWI, illegally selling alcohol to a minor, and underage drinking.

James Blumberg Law serves clients in the State of Minnesota including Dakota County, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, and Rice County. Do not tackle your alcohol charges alone. Call (952) 431-7758 to schedule a free consultation with attorney James Blumberg today. He will help you understand the charges you’re facing and assist you in building a strong defense against them.

James Blumberg Law serves clients in Apple Valley and Dakota County, including Eagan, Hastings, Lakeville, Mendota Heights, Rosemount, Grove Heights, and Lakeville.

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Information Center

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Is Minor in Possession of Alcohol a Criminal Offense?

Although the legal drinking age in America is 21 years old, that doesn’t stop young adults from trying to possess alcohol before then. Under Minnesota law, possession of alcohol by a minor is a serious criminal offense and anyone who violates the law may be charged with a misdemeanor. According to Minnesota Statutes 340A.503, a conviction is punishable by up to $1,000 in fines and up to 90 days in jail.

Aside from expensive fines and time spent bars, the crime can result in several additional consequences such as the suspension your driver’s license as well as enrollment in an alcohol education program. If you’re facing charges for an alcohol-related crime in Minnesota, the best thing you can do is to obtain a criminal defense attorney that can fight on your behalf.

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What is the Zero Tolerance Law in Minnesota?

Minnesota has a Zero Tolerance Law for underage drinking and driving. The state’s “Zero Tolerance Law,” otherwise known as “Not a Drop Law,” prohibits individuals under the age of 21 from operating a motor vehicle under the influence of any amount of alcohol or other illegal substances. According to Minnesota Statutes 169A.33, an individual who violates the law can be charged with a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor carries a penalty of up to $1,000 in fines and up to 90 days in jail.

Unfortunately, if a young adult is convicted of Minnesota’s Zero Tolerance law, they must also undergo a mandatory license suspension. If the individual is facing a first time DWI offense, the suspension will be a minimum of 30 days. A second or subsequent violation will result in a loss of driving privileges for least 180 days.

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Degrees of DWI in Minnesota

It’s important to note that regardless of the driver’s age, anyone under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance can be charged with DWI (driving while impaired). An individual that operates a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher automatically violates Minnesota’s DWI statute.

DWI penalties in Minnesota range from $1,000 to $14,000 in fines and 7 years of imprisonment depending on the number of previous convictions you have and other aggravating factors.

First Degree DWI:

  • Felony
  • Charged if there have been 3 or more alcohol related incidents within the past 10 years
  • Charged if previously convicted of a felony under section 169A.24
  • Charged if previously convicted of a felony under
    • Certain sections under the Criminal Vehicular Homicide or Injury statute
  • Up to $14,000 in fines
  • Up to 7 years in prison 

Second Degree DWI:

  • Gross Misdemeanor
  • Charged when there are 2 or more aggravating factors
  • Charged if the defendant refuses chemical testing and one aggravating factor was present when the violation was committed
  • Up to $3,000 in fines
  • Up to 1 year in jail

Third Degree DWI: 

  • Gross Misdemeanor
  • Charged when 1 aggravating factor is present
  • Charged if the defendant refused to submit to a chemical test
  • Up to $3,000 in fines
  • Up to 1 year in jail 

Fourth Degree DWI:

  • Misdemeanor
  • Charged with no aggravating factors
  • Up to $1,000 in fines
  • Up to 90 days in jail

Aggravating factors include test refusal, prior DWI convictions within the past 10 years, a BAC of .16 or higher and driving while impaired with a child passenger.

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Resources for Alcohol Offenses in Minnesota

Office of Traffic Safety –  Visit the official website for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety. The site offers underage drinking facts and a section on consequences of providing alcohol to minors. You can also read about distracted driving laws, impaired driving laws, and teen driver laws.

Minnesota Statutes: Underage Possession of Alcohol – Visit the official website for the Minnesota Legislature. The page discusses several alcohol offenses in Minnesota such as underage possession, purchasing and consumption of alcohol. You can also read penalties that a person can acquire if they’re convicted of these crimes.

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Apple Valley DWI Defense Attorney | MN

If you are currently facing alcohol-related criminal charges, it is important to work with a criminal defense lawyer with an in-depth understanding of the charges you’re facing. James Blumberg is a knowledgeable alcohol offense attorney in Apple Valley, MN who has more than a decade serving clients just like you. He can work hard to obtain the best possible outcome for your case.

If you are ready to obtain a free initial consultation, call attorney James Blumberg at (952) 431-7758. James Blumberg Law represents individuals in Minnesota and surrounding areas including the Twin Cities region such as Hennepin County, Ramsey County and Anoka County.

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