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Is your UGA student facing an underage DUI charge?

In some cases, different laws apply depending on a person's age. Teenagers cannot legally drive until they pass their driver's test at the age of 16, and they cannot buy lottery tickets or other items until they reach 18. Of course, they cannot legally purchase or consume alcohol until the age of 21.

Though you know you raised your child to be a responsible young adult, you may still worry about some of the activities that he or she will participate in while attending the University of Georgia. You certainly want your child to get the most out of the experience, but you likely also hope that he or she will enjoy football season and cheer for the Dawgs without consuming alcohol.

Unmet expectations

Unfortunately, your hopes were not met, and you learned that your underage child is facing a DUI charge. When you first heard the news, you undoubtedly felt shocked that your child could end up in such a situation and dismayed over the possible consequences the charge could have on his or her future. Your child may have even told you that he or she was not drunk, but even so, zero tolerance laws make underage drinking and driving illegal.

Lower legal limit

When it comes to DUI charges, most states have a per se legal blood alcohol concentration limit of 0.08%. However, zero tolerance laws for underage drinking lower that limit substantially. In Georgia, if your child's BAC level reached or exceeded 0.02%, that information contributed to the DUI charge.

Your child may already have tried making excuses to you about how the scenario came about and may have even stated that the entire situation was unfair because he or she did not drink that much. Indeed, the strict nature of zero tolerance laws may seem unfair to some people, but states implement such laws in efforts to lower the chances of young people suffering fatal injuries in alcohol-related crashes.

What can you do?

While you may understand the protective nature of such laws, some part of you may wish that they did not apply to your child. Of course, your child is not above the law, and now that criminal charges have been filed, you may need to help him or her find the best way to handle the situation. Reaching out for legal support from experienced attorneys may be a smart step.

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