Virginia Minor in Possession of Alcohol Attorney

If there is any age that sticks out in people’s minds when it comes to the law, it is 21. That is the age when a person can legally purchase and consume alcohol in Virginia. Most people understand that underage possession of alcohol is illegal, but they may not realize just how serious of a problem it can be for a person who is convicted. At Randall Page, P.C., we are standing by to help when you need a Virginia possession attorney. If you or a loved one are facing this charge, we will investigate the case and work to get the charges reduced or dismissed altogether.

The Virginia minor in possession statute

Underage possession is a commonly cited charge in Virginia, particularly in towns where there is a large college-aged population. However, underage possession of alcohol is a Class 1 misdemeanor offense in Virginia. To put this into perspective, a DUI offense is also a Class 1 misdemeanor.

When we turn to § 4.1-305 of the VA Code, we can find two main parts of the Virginia underage possession of alcohol statutes.

  1. The first part of this statute prohibits the consumption, possession, and purchase of alcohol to any person to whom alcohol may not be sold legally. This almost always applies to people under the age of 21.
  2. The second part of this statute prohibits the use or attempt to use any form of identification in order to establish false identification or false age in an attempt to purchase or consume alcohol. In other words, a person cannot use a fake ID or the identification of another person in order to pass themselves off as being old enough to purchase or consume alcohol.

Consequences for Virginia minor in possession charges

Because minor in possession charges in Virginia are considered Class 1 misdemeanor offenses, we find that the penalties include:

  • A fine of up to $2,500
  • Up to 12 months in jail

It is important for us to point out that these are the maximum penalties for all Class 1 misdemeanor offenses in Virginia, and these penalties are rarely applied for minor in possession of alcohol charges.

However, there is a mandatory minimum fine of $500 OR a mandatory minimum of 50 hours of community service for minor in possession charges. The judge in these cases will decide whether or not they want the defendant to complete the community service or pay the fine.

There is also a mandatory six-month license suspension in place for those charged with minor in possession. However, the defendant in the case is allowed to apply for a restricted license.

First-time offenders of minor in possession in Virginia may be eligible for pre-conviction probation. If a defendant asks the court to enter this program, they must complete a number of requirements. This can include treatment and education programs. If a person successfully completes pre-conviction probation, the minor in possession charge will be dismissed.

Let one of our attorneys review your case today

If you or somebody you care about is under 21 years of age and has been charged with being in possession of alcohol, please speak to a skilled criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. At Randall Page, P.C., we understand how much of a setback these charges can be for someone who is still young and working on getting their life started. We will investigate every aspect of the charges against you in an effort to get them reduced or dismissed. When you need a Virginia minor in possession of alcohol attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation of your case by clicking here or by calling 757-517-8956.

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