Minor in Possession of Alcohol
The smallest acts can sometimes have consequences that may reverberate throughout the years. Such is the case when a minor is charged with possession of alcohol. When kids go off to college or socialize with other young adults over 21, it is easy for them to be lured into situations that can lead to serious trouble. Arizona Minor in Possession (MIP) laws are very clear about prohibiting minors from being in possession of alcoholic beverages. This is not something to be taken lightly. Not all parents or young people are aware of the laws and the serious sanctions that can come with breaking them. Matthew Lopez Law is here to change that, by educating parents and young people on the realities.
MIP – Small Violations with Big Consequences
The state of Arizona has a zero-tolerance law when it comes to people under the age of 21 and alcoholic beverages. This includes beer, wine and the ever-popular alcopops, which are flavored alcoholic beverages with low alcohol content, which are very popular with young people. The Arizona Minor in Possession law demonstrates how strict our state is on any connection between alcohol and minors. According to ARS 4-2244(9) “It is unlawful . . . for a person under the legal drinking age to buy, receive, have in the person’s possession or consume spirituous liquor.”
Going to a party with older friends can turn into a bad situation if anyone under 21 is apprehended while holding an alcoholic beverage or found to have one on their person. A 19-year-old holding a beer for her 21-year-old friend can be charged with MIP, even though she has not taken a sip of the beverage. A 20-year-old can be charged with a criminal offense for having an unopened wine cooler in his backpack. What’s the harm in holding a wine cooler for a friend or taking a six-pack up to the dorm for the guys? The consequences can be much more than a slap on the wrist. A free consultation with Matthew Lopez Law is a wise investment of your time.
Limit the Effects of a MIP Misdemeanor Charge
A MIP charge can result in a permanent criminal record, which can have a serious impact on current and future life choices. Employers look askance at convictions. Schools may also take disciplinary actions that could affect financial aid or enrollment.
The court can choose to impose various penalties depending on the situation and whether or not this is a first offense. Sanctions may include as much as jail time, fines of up to $2,500, probation, treatment and community service. Those under 18 years of age may also lose driving privileges for up to six months. Matthew Lopez Law helps young people every year, either avoid or minimize these consequences.
Hire an Experienced Arizona MIP Lawyer
MIP charges are serious and can have lasting effects; however, with experienced legal representation, penalties can often be mitigated. Matthew Lopez has the expertise and experience with MIP cases to offer professional, effective representation. Mr. Lopez will work with you to find the best resolution for your case. He will also assist in related issues that may affect your schooling or financial aid.
People new to Arizona or those who are not aware of Arizona’s laws regarding alcohol and people under 21 years of age can be caught off guard. However, ignorance of the law is not an accepted excuse in the courtroom. We understand that at Matthew Lopez Law, PLLC. We are here to help in your defense. Contact us for the very best representation for your MIP case.