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Underage drunk driving in Virginia

On Behalf of | Mar 15, 2024 | DWI |

The legal drinking age is 21, and driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal regardless of age. However, underage drunk driving charges can have especially damaging consequences on a young person’s future.

Drivers under 21 should recognize that consuming even a small amount of alcohol can lead to serious charges.

Reviewing the penalties

Unfortunately, some young individuals make the mistake of getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol. The Department of Motor Vehicles states that in Virginia, drivers under 21 can face charges if their blood alcohol content level is .02 or greater. Young drivers are often unaware of the severe ramifications of charges due to driving with a minute amount of alcohol in their system. They may face a range of penalties, including fines, license suspension, community service and even jail time.

These consequences can have immediate and long-term effects on their future prospects. For starters, a case can severely limit educational and employment opportunities. Many colleges and universities, as well as employers, conduct background checks. Drunk driving charges can raise red flags and hinder one’s chances of becoming accepted or hired. Furthermore, a drunk driving case can also impact a young person’s ability to secure scholarships, loans or financial aid for higher education.

Other consequences

Underage drunk driving charges may lead to increased insurance premiums or even the loss of coverage. This can make it difficult to afford a car or maintain financial independence. Additionally, these allegations can tarnish one’s reputation within their community, affecting personal relationships and social standing. Beyond the legal and financial implications, underage drunk driving charges can also take a toll on a young person’s mental and emotional well-being.

It is very important for young individuals to make responsible choices and carefully review the details of their case if drunk driving charges arise.