Driver’s License Suspension Mandatory in Utah for Minor in Possession of Alcohol

Minor in Possession and Unlawful Consumption

The Utah Legislature, in all of its infinite wisdom, has mandated that any adult between the ages of 18 and 21 who is in possession of alcohol or is cited for unlawfully consuming alcohol must have his license suspended for one year.  How an 18 year old drinking in his dorm room or at a friend’s house is even remotely related to his driver’s license is confusing at best.

At least the driver’s license penalties incorporated in Utah DUI laws have a logical relation to the law since a DUI involves driving a motor vehicle.

Is there Anyway to Avoid the Year Suspension?

The short answer is yes, but it takes some work on the defendant’s part and an amicable judge.  There are two things that you can do to shorten the suspension period.  First, it has to be your first conviction.  Second, you have to complete a prime for life substance abuse course.  Finally, the judge presiding over your case has to agree to it.  We’ve found in our experience that most judges are willing to reduce the suspension period, but there are a few out there who are about as logical as the Legislature and feel it their duty to punish you for being such a horrible person for drinking under age.

What if It’s My Second Offense but My First Was a Plea in Abeyance?

If you successfully completed the terms of your plea in abeyance on prior charges for unlawful consumption or minor in possession charge and the case was successfully dismissed, and then you are then charged again and are convicted, the second violation technically counts as a first since the first violation was never entered as a conviction.  That means that even on a second violation you could still have your driver’s license suspension reduced, so long as the judge agrees.

Give our Utah criminal defense lawyers a call if you have any questions concerning your unlawful consumption or minor in possession charges.  801.618.1334.

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