Underage students at Grand Valley State University drink alcohol. It is simply a fact that despite underage drinking being illegal in Michigan and throughout the United States, students younger than 21 years old regularly drink alcohol on college campuses. Although underage drinking is common, it should not be taken casually. Underage drinking can have many consequences for a student, including losing his or her scholarships and being expelled from his or her university.
If you are a Grand Valley State University student or the parent of a student there, take time to learn about Michigan’s underage drinking laws. Know what to do if you or your child are charged with underage drinking, which is a misdemeanor in Michigan.
As of January 1, 2018, an individual’s first incident of underage drinking is a civil offense, punishable with a $100 fine. His or her second offense is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $200. For an individual’s third underage drinking charge, he or she faces up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.
It is always in your best interest to fight an underage drinking charge. Although a first-time offense has light penalties, keep in mind that when this charge is on an individual’s criminal record, his or her next underage drinking charge will subject the student to criminal penalties.
Other drinking-related charges college students can face include:
Drinking can also increase a student’s risk of committing other actions and facing other criminal charges, such as:
Contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer right away to represent his or her in court. Remind your child that he or she has the right to avoid self-incrimination in statements made to law enforcement and the court, the right to remain silent in interactions with law enforcement, the right to refuse to consent to a search of his or her vehicle or other private property, and the right to have a lawyer represent him or her in court.
The most effective defense strategy for your child’s case depends on the circumstances at play. His or her lawyer will advise you about the most appropriate course of action to take.
If you or your child are facing an underage drinking charge, do not wait to start working on your legal defense strategy with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Contact our team at Van Den Heuvel Law Office today to set up your initial legal consultation in our office. We see legal challenges where others see problems.