Penalties For Underage DUI Cases in Montgomery County

Due to the potential impact of DUI charges for drivers under the age of 21, it is imperative that if you or a family member are arrested you consult with a Montgomery County DUI lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your underage DUI case in Montgomery County.

The following is information on the penalties an underage driver may face for DUI charges and how these charges could potentially impact your education. Call today to learn more.

What You May Face if Charged For DUI While Underage

The penalties that you will face for a DUI in Montgomery County while under the age of 21 are exactly the same as what you would face if you were over 21. The maximum penalties remain the same and the typical period of incarceration is exactly the same as well. The only noticeable difference in this regard is probation as it is more likely that someone would receive supervised probation while under the age of 21 than over the age of 21.

Impact on a Driver’s License

There is a license restriction for individuals in Montgomery County who are under 21, so even if they have a breath alcohol content that is under .08 they will be charged with the violation of their license restriction. The licenses that have a license restriction can’t be modified in any way other than an ignition interlock for a period of 6 months. If you are going to have your license suspended as an underage driver and you want to drive, then you have to have an interlock device.

Process of Obtaining a Restricted License

For drivers underage the process of obtaining a restricted license is very similar to those that are over the age of 21. You still attend a hearing at the Office of Administrative Hearings in front of the Administrative Law Judge and then there is a determination of whether the judge should modify your suspension. In most cases, suspensions will be modified if requested. The only problem is when an individual is under 21, he may have to participate in ignition interlock, which can be both financially and personally onerous for an individual.

Impact of a DUI On Students

The impact of a DUI charge on a Montgomery County student is largely going to depend on the specific university’s school policy. Every university has their own policy when their students are charged with a crime which is going to vary significantly from one university to another.

Will The University Find Out?

That is going to depend on how the university handles things and on the specifics of the case. If the campus police arrested them, then the odds are very good that the university will find out. If they were arrested in a different state than the one where they attend university, then it is very unlikely that the university will find out. Some universities will require students to notify the university as part of the honor code while other universities don’t have that requirement.

Alternatives to Jail for Those Under-21

What a Montgomery County DUI lawyer would usually recommend in a case where an individual is facing some period of incarceration is that she enroll in and complete a program of inpatient alcohol treatment. Most judges will give people day-for-day credit for time spent in an inpatient treatment program against the time that they would have otherwise spent in jail. What that means is if the judge is trying to send somebody for a weekend of incarceration and they have completed 2 days of inpatient rehabilitation, the judge may not subject them to any kind of incarceration at all. If judge is inclined to send somebody to 30 days of active incarceration and that individual has already completed a 30-day inpatient treatment program, then again she may be able to avoid incarceration.

Requirements for Alternative Sentences

Participation in inpatient alcohol treatment is not really considered an alternative sentence in Montgomery County. It is something that you can do as mitigation prior to attending court. In terms of alternative sentences instead of jail there are options that involve home detention or ankle monitoring or something else along those lines. In most courts in Maryland that could be an exception and not the rule. The only time that a lot of the courts will consider home detention instead of active incarceration is if an individual has some kind of really unique condition. There have been cases where individuals are very ill and need to regularly receive medical treatment; that is the time when home detention is used.