Once you become 21 in the United States, you are free to buy and drink alcohol. New Jersey state law puts limitations on what you can do when you drink, since being inebriated impairs our judgment and motor skills. Underage drinking laws in New Jersey regulate the consumption of alcohol for those who are under the age of 21. Their are other criminal acts that are associated with underage drinking and these are just a few examples.
Underage Drinking Laws In New Jersey (N.J.S.A. 2C:33-15)
The same does not apply to those under 21. Buying and consuming alcohol underage is illegal and can result in some serious consequences. Underage Drinking Laws (N.J.S.A. 2C:33-15) are strictly enforced in New Jersey and are not taken lightly. Any minor caught in possession of alcohol will face fines of no less than $500. A minor choosing to host a social gathering where alcohol is consumed can also face penalties especially if a person is injured, property is damaged, or someone dies. The chances of those things happening are much higher at an event with minors, since they have little experience with alcohol consumption.
Underage Drinking And Fake ID Laws In NJ (N.J.S.A. 2C:28-7)
Since it is illegal for minors to be sold alcohol, they often use illegal means to purchase it. This is most common in the form of a fake identification card. A person under 21 caught presenting a fake ID (N.J.S.A. 2C:28-7) may have their driver's license suspended for 6 months up to 2 years. If they do not have a license at the time of their conviction, that penalty would be imposed once the time period for them to obtain a license begins. Additionally, they can be given a jail sentence of up to 6 months, and $1,000 in fines.
Underage Drinking While Intoxicated In New Jersey (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50)
The consequences of drinking and driving as a minor are the most severe. Although the blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, limit to drive in New Jersey is 0.08%, a minor can be found guilty of driving while intoxicated (DWI) (N.J.S.A. 39:4-5) with a BAC of 0.01%. An underage drinker who is charged with a DWI will face a license suspended, will be placed in a alcohol safety programs, and may have to face the penalties an adult would receive for drinking and driving.
New Jersey has a very strict zero tolerance policy for the consumption of alcohol by underage minors. A minor intoxicated is a very dangerous thing. They put themselves at risk by drinking, as well as others if they cannot handle the effects alcohol has on a person. A good rule to follow if you are a minor who comes into contact with alcohol is to simply not drink. Not only will you save yourself from possible sickness and embarrassment, you can also be of service to anyone who does find themselves in a dangerous situation after drinking too much. No matter what age you are, it is a bad idea to get behind the wheel of a car intoxicated. By choosing to do the right thing as a minor and not drink, you can save the lives of strangers, your friend's lives, and most importantly, your own life and future.
Reach Out To A Defense Attorney
If you or a family member are facing charges related to underage drinking do not hesitate to contact the legal defense team at Villani & DeLuca. Our criminal defense lawyers appeared in court throughout Monmouth County and Ocean County, New Jersey. We will work diligently to defend you or your loved ones against any pending charges. Whether you are in Hazlet, Asbury Park, Toms River or Jackson or any surrounding towns we can help! Call us today at 732-709-7757 for a FREE consultation.