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Minor in Possession of Alcohol

It is not uncommon for minors who are arrested for the underage drunk driving offense of operating a vehicle after underage consumption (OVUAC) to also face charges relating to minor in possession (MIP) of alcohol.

Officers sometimes set up sting operations at concerts and sporting events to catch people under the age of 21 consuming alcohol.

Alleged juvenile offenders who plead guilty or are convicted of these type of crimes not only face possible imprisonment, fines, and driver’s license suspension in some cases, but also have the charges reflected on their criminal records.

The good news for minors is that the juvenile courts in Ohio tend be more sympathetic and lenient than traditional adult criminal courts.

Even if an alleged juvenile offender is able to be sentenced to a first offender or other diversion program, successful completion of the program is necessary in order to avoid much more serious consequences.

Lawyer for Minor in Possession of Alcohol in Ohio

Were you or your child recently charged with MIP during an underage driving under the influence (DUI) arrest? The Joslyn Law Firm defends clients of all ages all over Cincinnati and surrounding parts of Hamilton County, including Hamilton, Lebanon, Norwood, Middletown, and many others.

Brian Joslyn is an experienced Cincinnati DUI attorney who handles operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs (OVI) charges in many neighboring areas, such as Mason in Franklin County, Butler in Butler County, and Fairfield in Clermont County. Call (513) 339-6289 right now to take advantage of a free consultation that will let our lawyers review your case.


Overview of Minor in Possession of Alcohol in Hamilton County


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Minors 18 to 21 in Possession of Alcohol Charges in Ohio

Ohio Revised Code § 4301.69(E) states that no underage person shall knowingly order, pay for, share the cost of, attempt to purchase, possess, or consume any beer or intoxicating liquor in any public or private place. The court may order minors who violate this law into a diversion program and hold the complaint in abeyance pending successful completion of the diversion program.

Minors are ineligible to enter into a diversion program if they have previously been diverted for MIP. If an alleged juvenile offender successfully completes the diversion program, the court will dismiss the complaint and order the child's record in the case sealed.

If the minor fails to satisfactorily complete the diversion program, the court will proceed with the complaint. For alleged juvenile offenders who are under 21 years of age but are 18 years of age or older, MIP is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.

Additionally, if the minor is charged with consumption of beer or intoxicating liquor in a motor vehicle, that crime is a fourth-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $250. An open container of alcohol in the motor vehicle is a minor misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $150.


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Minors Under 18 in Possession of Alcohol Charges in Cincinnati

Alleged juvenile offenders who are under 18 years of age are not subject the same penalties as those between the ages of 18 and 21. While minors under 18 years of age will be entered into the same diversion programs for MIP charges, they do not face the possibility of jail time.

Repeat offenders, however, may be committed to youth detention facilities. If an alleged juvenile offender is under the age of 18 at the time of an MIP or consumption of beer or intoxicating liquor in a motor vehicle offense, the court can suspend the minor’s temporary instruction permit, probationary driver's license, or driver's license for a period of at least six months and up to one year.

If alleged juvenile offenders are 15 1/2 years of age or older and have not been issued temporary instruction permits or probationary driver's licenses, they will not be eligible to be issued such a license or permit for a period of six months. If minors have not attained the age of 15 1/2, they will not be eligible to be issued a temporary instruction permit until they are 16 years of age.


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Ohio Resources for Minors in Possession of Alcohol

Ohio State Report | Stop Underage Drinking — This state report is excerpted from the 2013 Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking submitted to Congress by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. You can review underage drinking facts in Ohio, including alcohol use and binge alcohol use in the past month. The report also provides an overview of state laws addressing minors in possession of alcohol, targeting underage drinking and driving, and targeting alcohol suppliers.

Keys2Drive | The AAA Guide to Teen Driver Safety — The American Automobile Association is a non-profit member service organization that has members throughout the United State and Canada. Keys2Drive provides teenagers with ways to learn the rules of the road before driving, understand how to be a safe driver, and keep them and others safe on the road. You can also download a parent-teen driving agreement that allows parents to establish and enforce consequences for certain violations, such as driving after having used alcohol or drugs.


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Find a Minor in Possession of Alcohol Lawyer in Cincinnati, Ohio

If your child is facing MIP charges after being arrested for OVUAC in Ohio, you will want to be sure that you have legal counsel who knows the most effective ways to fight both charges. The Joslyn Law Firm represents clients who have been arrested for OVI and many related offenses in Cincinnati and surrounding areas such as Wilmington in Greene County, Marysville in Warren County, and Oxford in Clinton County.

Brian Joslyn is a Ohio DUI lawyer who has been certified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as an instructor in the administration of standardized field sobriety tests. He can evaluate your case as soon as you call (513) 339-6289 or complete an online form to set up a free, confidential consultation.


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