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Baltimore Underage DUI Lawyer

As long as an individual is eighteen or older, the criminal charges they face as a result of a DUI stop are exactly the same whether they are under or over twenty-one. The big difference people under twenty-one experience is usually on their driver’s license. A Baltimore DUI attorney can explain what the differences associated with underage DUIs could mean in somebody’s case.

In Maryland, everyone under twenty-one has an alcohol restriction on their driver’s license. There is no restriction that says they cannot have anything to drink prior to getting behind the wheel, so even a breath test result of a .03 BAC would result in a violation of their alcohol restriction as would a refusal to submit to a chemical test of their breath. That triggers significantly harsher penalties against the individual’s driver’s license than if they are over twenty-one. However, the criminal penalties for DUI are exactly the same regardless of the individual’s age.

Factors in Underage DUI Cases

The levels of impairment are exactly the same; it is a .08 BAC for a DUI per se. For other types of DUI, there must be a demonstration of subjective impairment. However, because the individual has a license restriction, they are violating their license restriction with a result of greater than a .02 BAC. It won’t make the DUI easier to prove, but there is an additional charge that they receive from violating the license restriction that is significantly easier to prove with a lower BAC.

What to Expect in an Underage DUI Case in Baltimore

The DUI case is handled in the same manner as a standard DUI in the court. The case is initially heard in the district court. The individual has the right to a jury trial if they are charged with a DUI which could get the case transferred to the circuit court. That is a very specific analysis for that individual’s case. It depends on the jurisdiction they are in and which judge they drew in district court whether or not it makes sense to have the case transferred. It is best to consult with a Baltimore underage DUI lawyer who has handled these cases before as he will have a better idea of how your case could potential unfold, as well as who the judges and prosecutors are in the local courts and how they tend to view charges like these.

Underage DUI Prosecution in Baltimore

Prosecutors in Baltimore take an underage DUI very seriously. When an individual gets a DUI before they are twenty-one and have been driving for less than five years. In the first five years of driving, if they received a DUI, the prosecutors take that extraordinarily seriously.

In terms of actual sentencing, most experienced Baltimore underage DUI attorneys will say the big difference between the under twenty-one and over twenty-one tends to be in the supervision required on probation. Judges are unlikely to give people under twenty-one unsupervised probation. There is a possibility that some judges will give over twenty-one drivers unsupervised probation. That tends to be the big difference between sentencing for people who are under or over twenty-one; it is the intensity of the probation supervision.

How Universities Deal With These Charges

Regarding how an underage DUI impacts a student’s status, that varies from university to university. For some universities, there is absolutely no effect, for others a DUI can have a pretty significant impact on student’s status.

That depends on where the offense took place, where the university is, and how thorough the university is doing those kinds of checks. If an individual is a Maryland resident and attends a university in California, and they picked up a DUI in Maryland during summer break, it’s pretty unlikely that the university in California will find that out. If an individual is stopped on campus by university police and charged with a DUI, it is likely that the university is going to find out.

University Hearing Processes

The hearing process varies from university to university. Usually, people do not bring their criminal defense attorney with them to those types of hearings because they are done in an administrative context. If they are done in that way, there are some kind of specific administrative rules and procedures that are applied, based on how the university handles this.

There is no standard for university punishment relating to students who receive underage DUI charges in Baltimore. There is so much variation between universities and sometimes even between colleges within the university, that there is no single answer for that. That’s something the individual must deal at their specific university.

Laws Regarding Under 18 DUI Charges

It is still charged as a DUI; however the big difference is that a case such as this is heard in the juvenile court. That is in the circuit court and heard in front of a juvenile master rather than in front of district court judge.

The BAC requirements are still the same, however as with people who are under twenty-one, those under eighteen have license restrictions as well, so that could trigger those additional penalties for under twenty-one drivers.