Because alcohol consumption is prohibited for all individuals under the age of 21, Arizona's policy on anyone arrested for drinking and driving while under the legal age is strict.
ARS 4-244.34 Under Age Drinking and Driving
It is unlawful for a person under twenty-one years of age to drive or be in physical control of a motor vehicle while there is any spirituous liquor in the person’s body.
A person under 21 does not have to be impaired. If they have ANY alcohol in their system, it is illegal to drive.
First Offense Penalties for Underage Drinking and Driving in Arizona:
The maximum sentence for an Underage Drinking and Driving is six months in jail and up to $2,500 in fines.
The minimum penalty for a first offense Underage Drinking and Driving in Arizona includes:
- License suspension for 2 years. (A judge may order a restricted driving permit which allows the person to drive to and from work and school. In order to get the restricted permit, the driver will be required to install and use an ignition interlock device)
Other potential penalties:
- Up to 6 months jail
- Possible Probation for up to 3 years
- Possible community service
- Possible MADD Impact panel
- Possible jail costs
- Probable increased Insurance premiums, if insurance can even be obtained
At the Law Offices of Robert A. Butler PLLC, we understand that a conviction for Under Age drinking and driving will severely impact the lives of the young person and his or her family. The young person loses the ability to come and go freely and the parents become responsible for transportation. We fight to get these charges dismissed or reduced to a charge without the harsh penalties. Even if we cannot get the charges dismissed or reduced it is still important to hire experienced legal counsel.
Judges do not automatically give restricted driving permits. The judges need to be convinced that the young person understands the severity of their actions. The best chance of convincing a judge to order a restricted permit is with the help of an attorney who has successfully obtained restricted permits for clients in the past.