Consequences of a DWI Conviction When You Are Under 21

Although the legal age for possessing, purchasing, or consuming alcoholic beverages in the state of Missouri is 21, the fact is that many individuals consume alcohol prior to the age of 21. When minors, or those who are under 21, consume alcohol and then drive a motor vehicle, the consequences may be severe.

While DWI charges normally require a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08%, the legal BAC limit for minors is only 0.02%. This is such a low limit that it typically takes a very small amount of alcohol to reach it.

Any minor arrested for DWI will face an immediate driver’s license suspension. The length of the suspension depends on a number of different factors, including the driver’s past criminal history. For a first-time offender, the license suspension is likely to be for 90 days, but for minors with prior DWI arrests, the suspension period could be much longer.

In the state of Missouri, minors can get a driver’s permit at age 15 and a license at age 116. If a minor is arrested for DWI while he or she only has a driver’s permit, as opposed to a license, then it could prevent him or her from getting a license at the age of 16. One requirement for getting a license is that you have no alcohol-related convictions for 12 months. Therefore, a DWI arrest for minors with only driver’s permits can substantially delay their ability to get their driver’s licenses.

Aside from repercussions for driving privileges, you also can face up to six months in jail and a $500 fine for a DWI conviction as a minor. While it is not likely that a first-time minor DWI offender will serve six months in jail, it is a possibility. For a second or subsequent offense, the potential sentence of incarceration can be longer and the fines much higher.Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center provides strong legal representation on a regular basis for individuals who are charged with traffic, DWI crimes, and other criminal offenses. It is our priority is to represent your interests and protect your rights.  Call us at (816) 322-8008 and schedule an appointment to meet with us about your case today.

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