Minor in Possession / Consumption
All minors under 21 years of age are prohibited from consuming or possessing with the intent to consume alcoholic beverages. State law does provide an exception for minors who possess or consume alcohol in the homes of their parents or legal guardians with the permission of their parents or legal guardians.
While these are misdemeanor offenses, convictions can have extremely damaging long-term consequences. Alleged offenders should be sure to explore all of their legal options before simply pleading and agreeing to pay any fine.
Lawyer for Minor in Possession or Consumption of Alcohol in Apple Valley, MN
Were you or your child recently charged with underage possession or consumption of alcohol in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area? You will want to contact James Blumberg Law as soon as possible to give yourself the best chance at securing the most favorable possible outcome to your case.
James Blumberg is an experienced criminal defense attorney in Apple Valley who represents minors in such areas as Maple Grove, Blaine, Coon Rapids, Woodbury, Eden Prairie, Brooklyn Park, and Plymouth. Call (952) 431-7758 right now to have our lawyer review your case during a completely free initial consultation.
Minnesota Possession of Alcohol by Minors Information Center
- When can minors be charged with these crimes?
- What are the consequences of convictions in these cases?
- Where can I find more information about underage drinking?
Subdivision 1 of Minnesota Statute § 340A.503 makes it unlawful for any person under the age of 21 years to consume any alcoholic beverages. The term “consume” includes the ingestion of an alcoholic beverage and the physical condition of having ingested an alcoholic beverage.
Subdivision 3 of Minnesota Statute § 340A.503 makes it unlawful for any person under the age of 21 years to possess any alcoholic beverage with the intent to consume it at a place other than the household of that person’s parent or guardian. Possession at a place other than the household of the parent or guardian creates a rebuttable presumption of the minor’s intent to consume it at a place other than the household of his or her parent or guardian.
It is important to understand that a minor does not need to be legally intoxicated in order to be charged with either of these offenses. Minors who are intoxicated, however, can be charged with underage driving while impaired (DWI) if they were operating motor vehicles after consuming alcohol.
It is a misdemeanor for a person under 21 years of age to possess or consume alcohol. A conviction is punishable by a mandatory fine of at least $100 up to $1,000 as well as a possible sentence of up to 90 days in jail.
Even if a $100 fine doesn’t seem like a major deal right now, the consequences of a criminal record created by a guilty plea or conviction can be much more damaging. Some of the negative effects of pleading guilty to or being convicted of underage consumption or possession of alcohol may include, but are not limited to:
- Difficulties obtaining employment;
- Possible ineligibility for professional licenses;
- Difficulties being accepted by colleges or universities; and/ or
- Difficulties obtaining Federal Student Aid.
It is important to understand that a ticket or an arrest does not translate to an automatic conviction. An attorney can investigate the circumstances of the incident and identify all possible defenses that could possibly lead to criminal charges being dismissed.
Underage Drinking Consequences, Facts and Laws — View some the facts about underage drinking on this section of the Office of Traffic Safety website. In addition to consequences for minors, you can also learn about some of the penalties for adults who provide alcohol to people under 21 years of age. You can also find a link to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s “What’s the Big Deal” Underage Drinking brochure.
Office of Traffic Safety
445 Minnesota Street
St. Paul MN 55101
State Report Minnesota | Stop Underage Drinking — In 2006, Congress enacted the Sober Truth on Preventing Underage Drinking Act (STOP Act). Every year, the federal Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking (ICCPUD) updates the Report to Congress to reflect progress on national efforts, new research, and best practices to address underage drinking. You can view data from the Minnesota section of the June 2015 Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking through this link.
Find a Lawyer for Minor in Possession or Consumption of Alcohol in Apple Valley, MN
If you or your child were charged with underage consumption or possession of alcohol in the Twin Cities, it is in your best interest to make sure that you have legal representation. James Blumberg Law defends minors against all kinds of juvenile criminal charges in Dakota County, Hennepin County, Scott County, Anoka County, Washington County, Ramsey County, and Carver County.
Apple Valley criminal defense attorney James Blumberg is a former prosecutor who represents clients in Lakeville, Burnsville, St. Cloud, Eagan, Bloomington, Minnetonka, and many other nearby communities. You can receive a free consultation that will allow our lawyer to evaluate your case as soon as you call (952) 431-7758 or fill out an online contact form today.