Glen Allen VA Underage Possession of Alcohol Lawyers
Whether they are in school or hanging out with their friends, young people are subjected to peer pressure almost every day. And due to peer pressure, teens and young adults might end up drinking alcohol. While purchasing and drinking alcoholic beverages such as beer and wine might appear like something casual, law enforcement officers don’t treat it that way. Virginia is among the states in the country that have a zero-tolerance policy against underage drinking or possession of alcohol. Therefore, anyone under the age of 21 can be arrested and charged in a court of law if they are found intoxicated or in possession of alcohol.
Free Legal Consultation for Glen Allen VA Underage Possession of Alcohol Charges- Call us at (804) 355-8037
As underage drinking becomes more prevalent, penalties for violating state laws regarding purchasing, possession and drinking alcohol become more stringent. If you are the parent or guardian of a child who has been arrested or charged with underage drinking or possession of alcohol, you should contact The Weiland Firm right away. Our Glen Allen VA underage possession of alcohol lawyers will begin protecting your child’s rights immediately. Also, we will conduct a thorough evaluation of the case and then advise you on how best to proceed. We represent minors, teens, young adults and anyone under the age of 21, charged with underage drinking and possession of alcohol, throughout Glen Allen, VA
What Is the Penalty for Underage Drinking in Glen Allen Virginia?
Underage possession of alcohol is a serious criminal offense in Glen Allen, VA. As classified by the Virginia Legal Code Virginia Code Section 4.1-305 As a Class 1 misdemeanor, this offense is punishable by up to 50 hours of community service, a mandatory fine of $500, as well as loss or suspension of driving privileges for at least 6 months. If you are between the age of 18 and 21 and you have been convicted of underage possession of alcohol, you should note that this offense will always be visible, whenever someone conducts a background check on you. You will remain with this record your entire life unless it’s expunged. Whether or not you qualify for the offense to be expunged from your records, will depend on the outcome of your case. Regardless of the circumstances of your arrest, you should always consult a Glen Allen VA underage possession of alcohol lawyer.
Consequences of Underage Drinking in Glen Allen Virginia
If you are found guilty of underage drinking and possession of alcohol, you will end up with a permanent criminal record. Unfortunately, such a record can seriously jeopardize your future and prevent you from enjoying your life fully. For instance, you might have qualified for a sports or educational scholarship but now might be disqualified due to your criminal conviction and that opportunity will go to someone else. Also, if you apply for a job, there is a high chance that your potential employer will conduct a background check on you. During that check, your criminal record will show up and you might end up losing that opportunity due to some mistakes or a lapse in judgment that happened when you were a teen. Furthermore you might end up paying higher insurance premiums due to your criminal conviction.
Why Choose Us As Your Glen Allen VA Underage Possession of Alcohol Lawyer
The Virginia criminal justice system can be intimidating, complex and unforgiving, especially if you don’t have experienced legal counsel by your side. If you have been charged with underage drinking and possession of alcohol, it’s in your best interest to contact the law office of The Weiland Firm, PLC. As your experienced and skilled Glen Allen VA underage possession of alcohol lawyers, we will evaluate your case and then advise you how best to proceed. Depending on the circumstances of the case, we might enter a plea bargain or opt to have a trial and defend the charges you are facing in a court of law. Whichever course of action that we opt for, we always have your best interests at heart. We will never do anything that can jeopardize your case or affect your opportunities in the future. As noted earlier, the consequences of a criminal conviction are dire. They extend beyond the legal penalties of fines, community service or license suspension.
As much as you might pay the fines immediately after conviction, a criminal record can affect your future opportunities in more ways than you can imagine. Therefore, don’t take chances by entering a guilty plea, without consulting a criminal defense attorney first. At The Weiland Firm, PLC, we know that every case is unique. While we can’t guarantee a dismissal, we understand the severity of the criminal charges you are facing and will do everything we can to get you the best outcome. We will dedicate all our skills, expertise and resources to ensure that we secure a favorable result for your charges. We are dedicated criminal defense attorneys in Glen Allen VA, and we are here to help you make sense of the charges you are facing.
We are experienced criminal defense lawyers, serving Glen Allen and other areas of Central Virginia. At The Weiland Firm, PLC – Attorneys at Law, we understand that every criminal case has its own set of circumstances and facts. Also, every case requires a unique approach. If you, your child or your loved one has been arrested and charged with underage drinking and possession of alcohol in Glen Allen VA, don’t wait until they have been presented in court. Instead, contact our law office as soon as possible, for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Virginia First Offender Program
In Glen Allen Virginia, a defendant facing underage drinking and possession of alcohol charges for the first time are entitled to dismissal of the charges once they complete a probation program. In order to obtain the First Offender’s program, you must plead “no contest”, “guilty”, or stipulate otherwise that the facts are sufficient to prove your guilt (or the judge, after hearing the evidence must make a finding that the facts are sufficient to prove your guilt). This means that even you complete this program successfully, you will still end up with a record (just not a conviction). As much as this program sounds great, it comes with stringent conditions that the defendant must adhere to. And, you can never have the matter expunged.
As part of this program, you must submit to regular alcohol testing. Also, you must complete compulsory community service. The judge will determine the length of the community service program. Apart from that, you will have to pay court costs and fees associated with your case, as set out by the judge. Also, if you have been charged with underage drinking and possession of alcohol and you enter the first offender program, then your driver’s license might be suspended for at least 6 months. However, you can request the court to grant you a restricted driver’s license. With a restricted driver’s license, you can use your car to go to church, school, medical appointments as well as few other exceptions. And if you are an out-of-state driver, then you will be banned from driving in Virginia. If you complete this program successfully, then it will indicate on your records that your charges were dismissed after successful completion of the first offender program.
First offenders of underage drinking and possession laws in Virginia are often enticed by the state’s differed disposition program. Under this program, your underage drinking and possession of alcohol charges will be dismissed, which is quite a significant improvement than a criminal conviction. However, it’s important to note that this program is not always the best cause of action. Entering the first offender’s program instead of fighting the underage drinking and possession of alcohol charges might not be ideal for your situation if you have a strong legal defense. There are other steps our attorneys can prepare you for that can result in a better outcome as well. Also, if you cannot afford to lose your driver’s license for 6 months, then you should not opt for the first offender’s program.
If you or your child has been arrested or charged with a summons for underage drinking and possession of alcohol, opting for the deferred disposition program might sound like a great choice. However, you should not settle for anything, plead guilty, or accept a no contest plea, unless you’ve consulted or talked to our criminal defense attorneys. An experienced Glen Allen VA underage possession of alcohol lawyer can help evaluate your case. After the case evaluation, the attorney will determine whether you should take a not guilty plea and defend yourself in court or pursue the differed disposition program.
Contact Us Today at (804) 355-8037
It’s tempting to think of underage drinking and possession of alcohol as nothing more than just an embarrassing inconvenience. Unfortunately, that is not the case in Glen Allen, VA. Underage drinking and possession of alcohol is a criminal offense in Virginia. Therefore, if you are found guilty and convicted, you will end up with a permanent criminal record, which will always show up whenever someone runs background checks on you. Even under the First Offender’s Program, your charges will remain on your criminal record. As a result, it can interfere with professional and educational opportunities as well as security clearances. Often times, you can mitigate or avoid these consequences with the help of a qualified and experienced criminal defense lawyer. If you or your child has been charged with underage drinking and possession of alcohol, you should contact the law offices of The Weiland Firm, PLC, for a free consultation. We will gather information and facts about the specific charges that you are facing, and then discuss the most appropriate course of action to take.
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