DUI offenses can be overwhelming enough, without the added element of being underage. The penalties for a minor charged for DUI as an adult in West Palm Beach, are the same penalties that an adult would face for the offense. This can be a difficult situation to navigate alone, and with so much at stake, it is vital that individual contact a lawyer. A qualified underage DUI attorney could devote the time and resources necessary to build a solid defense and mitigate penalties that an individual may face.
Why Would a Minor Be Charged as an Adult?
A minor will always be charged as an adult for a DUI. If a minor is suspected of committing a DUI and is arrested for committing a DUI, those charges are adult charges. There are no juvenile DUI charges. They will also have to face penalties for a minor charged for DUI as an adult in West Palm Beach. The traffic laws in the state are universal for adults and juveniles. A minor will be charged as an adult for DUI if a minor gets arrested for DUI. The individual’s age, of course, plays into the defense lawyer’s strategy. The age means that this is a young person who should not be in trouble and hopefully will not have to carry this burden with them for the rest of their life. Underage DUI offense attorneys are tasked with the job of trying to minimize the damage as much as possible because it will affect the minor’s lifestyle and livelihood for the rest of their life. Age plays into it, as far as future implications go and attorneys will try and use the age for sympathy from a judge and/or a prosecutor.
Penalties for an Underage DUI
The penalties for a minor convicted as an adult for DUI in West Palm are the same as if an adult was charged and convicted with a DUI in West Palm Beach. The minimum mandatory penalties for a DUI in West Palm Beach are a conviction to a misdemeanor which stays on a person’s record on a permanent basis. The person, whether they are underage or not, will have to be placed on probation for a minimum of six months up to a maximum of 12 months.
While on probation, they must not commit any other crimes. They must report to their probation officer on a scheduled basis and pay $50 for the privilege of reporting every month, as well as completing all the special and general terms of their probation or sentence.
The special terms of a DUI sentence besides being convicted and besides on probation are that a person has to pay fines and court costs depending upon the facts of the case. The minimum fines and court costs are just under $1,000. They would have to do the DUI School which is a 12-hour class followed by a substance abuse evaluation and complete any recommended treatment.
Conditions of Release
As a part of the penalties for a minor charged for DUI as an adult in West Palm Beach, the individual would have to perform 50 hours of volunteer work with any non-profit organization. There is another school a person has to go to which is a one-night class called the victim impact panel ( VIP ) which is a one night class offered by Mother Against Drunk Driving, and in that type of format, they will hear from people who have been in jail for DUI or hear people who have lost loved ones to DUI. They will hear and see from people who have been scarred or maimed from DUI accidents. This is a scared straight/scared sober format.
The point is to educate people as far as the consequences of driving under the influence and how can it affect to other people and to try and get them to see the possible consequences of their actions so that it does not happen again to themselves or any innocent people or property owners.
A person’s driver’s license will be suspended for a minimum of six months. If it is the first offense, they may eligible for a hardship license, they are not allowed to possess or consume any alcohol or any controlled substances or recreational drugs without a valid prescription and they will be subject to random drug testing. Lastly, the vehicle that they were using will be subject to a 10-day vehicle immobilization. Those are what the penalties for a minor charged for DUI as an adult in West Palm Beach would be. If an individual has been charged with an underage DUI offense, they should work with a seasoned DUI lawyer that could negotiate with the prosecution and attempt to mitigate the penalties that the person might face.