Underage Drinking Defense in Wilmington
When the Party Stops, Our Wilmington Defense Attorney Is Here to Help
For many students, drinking is a part of the college experience. Students at the University of North Carolina and other nearby colleges may think nothing of partying over the weekend in Downtown Wilmington or Wrightsville Beach. But the fun can stop rather abruptly for underage students who are caught drinking.
If this happened to you, a fraternity brother or sister, or a roommate of yours, we want to help. Backed by 15+ years of legal experience, we know how to fight underage drinking charges and win. Let The Wagoner Law Firm, P.L.L.C attempt to do the same for you.
What's the Big Deal?
Drinking may be common on college campuses, but just because it’s common doesn't make it entirely legal. In fact, North Carolina has some of the strictest underage drinking and underage drinking and driving laws in the US. The state’s No Exceptions policy means minors will be criminally prosecuted for even attempting to purchase alcohol while underage. Furthermore, a minor need not be driving to be charged with underage drinking in North Carolina. Simply possessing alcohol is enough, even if the minor is not intoxicated. A breakdown of the state’s laws on underage drinking are as follows:
- Underage Possession of Alcohol: Possession is prohibited with NO EXCEPTIONS
- Internal Possession by Minors: Internal Possession is prohibited with NO EXCEPTIONS
- Underage Consumption of Alcohol: Consumption is prohibited with NO EXCEPTIONS
- Underage Purchase of Alcohol: Purchase is prohibited and there is NO ALLOWANCE for your purchase
- Using a Fake ID to Obtain Alcohol: Using false identification to purchase or otherwise obtain alcohol is classified as a criminal offense and persons in violation may be punished by driver’s license suspension
- Furnish Alcohol to Minors: Furnishing is prohibited with NO EXCEPTIONS.
For a student under the age of 21, a charge of underage drinking can mean a permanent criminal record, which can make getting a job or leasing an apartment extremely difficult. In addition, those charged with underage drinking can face probation and driver’s license suspension.
In short, there's a lot at stake for a young person facing this kind of charge; and you’re too young to set yourself up for future hardships so early on in life. Fortunately, an underage drinking attorney such as ours at The Wagoner Law Firm, P.L.L.C. can help protect students from the full force of potential legal consequences for underage drinking charges.
Don’t wait to contact us for a free consultation. We would be happy to review the circumstances that led to your charges and determine what your best defense options are at this time.
Can Minors Drink With Parents in North Carolina?
Minors are not allowed to drink with their parents in North Carolina even in private parties and even their own homes. Although it is legal in some states for minors to drink alcohol at private parties with permission from their parents, North Carolina is not one of those states. Officials with the state Division of Alcohol Law Enforcement said any adult who allows a minor to consume alcohol or reasonably should have known that underage drinking was occurring in their home can be criminally charged for misdemeanor aiding and abetting.
What Happens if a Minor is Caught Drinking?
If a minor is caught purchasing, possession of alcohol, they will be charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor. It is also up to the judge's choice for sentencing. The DMV could also revoke their license.
We Are Dedicated to Protecting Young Futures, Including Yours
Attorney Merritt Wagoner has well over a decade of experience handling underage drinking cases in North Carolina, and he knows what’s needed to successfully handle these cases in court. For example, in certain limited circumstances, minors are allowed to be in the possession of alcohol. If those circumstances apply to your case, Attorney Wagoner will certainly find them and use them in your defense. He can also investigate whether the officials who made the arrest did so in error, or somehow violated arrest procedure.
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