Underage DUI Lawyer in Ventura
Representation for Drivers Under 21
California and Ventura County impose some of the harshest driving under the influence (DUI) laws in the nation. For drivers under the legal drinking age of 21, however, there is an even stricter zero tolerance policy. If a driver under 21 is found to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of even .01%, then they can be charged with a DUI. In addition, California's zero tolerance policy subjects underage DUI offenders to severe criminal and driver's license penalties.
If you or your child has recently been arrested and charged with a DUI, be aware that serious repercussions may lie ahead. At times when young individuals should be excited about new opportunities in their lives, a DUI conviction can negatively impact their future and many of their hopes. Aside from various penalties and punishment, a conviction can be looked upon unfavorably by prospective employers, schools and education programs, landlords, and others who may conduct background checks. As such, anyone facing allegations for an underage DUI should be focused on retaining proven and experienced representation as soon as possible.
At Lessem, Newstat & Tooson, LLP, our firm's Ventura DUI lawyers have worked with numerous clients throughout the years – many of whom were under the age of 21.
From these experiences, we know that those who stand accused may feel frightened and overwhelmed. By working with our compassionate and attentive legal team, underage drivers can feel reassurance knowing that highly capable and confident lawyers are prepared to guide them through each stage of their legal journeys.
Underage DUI Penalties
As California upholds a zero tolerance policy for underage drivers, any detectable amount of alcohol of .01% or more can result in criminal allegations. While drivers of the legal drinking age have the ability to protect their licenses and obtain restricted licenses after a DUI conviction, underage drivers will have their driving privileges suspended strictly for one year. Without the prospect of a provisional license, many young individuals find that strict license suspensions are a source of tremendous strain. If a driver under 21 is convicted of a second or third offense within 10 years, they will have their driver's license revoked for two or three years respectively.
In addition to driver's license suspensions, underage DUI convictions will subject convicted individuals to a number of criminal penalties. For a first offense, these penalties may include possible terms of imprisonment, fines, court-ordered alcohol education classes, community service, and probation. As DUI convictions also create a number of hidden costs, convicted individuals may experience considerable financial struggles. Penalties may also be intensified if certain aggravating circumstances are involved, including DUIs causing accidents or injuries and higher BAC levels. Drivers who have high BAC levels may also be required to enroll in longer alcohol education programs.