Underage DWI

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Minneapolis Underage DWI Defense: Protect Your Child's Future

Expert Legal Defense in Minneapolis & St. Paul for Underage DWI

Minnesota’s legal drinking age is 21, which means consumption of alcohol by anyone under 21 is unlawful except in private, non-alcohol-selling premises and with the consent of a parent or legal guardian. Minnesota is also a zero-tolerance drunk driving state and has a “Not-a-Drop” law in place for minors. This means that if a driver under the age of 21 is found to have a blood alcohol content (BAC) over .00, they can be cited for underage DWI, or “driving while intoxicated.”

If your teen is facing DWI charges, we both know they can’t afford to lose. Convictions stay on their record forever, shaping employment opportunities for the rest of their lives. When your child’s future is on the line, turn to Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A. for prompt and powerful legal assistance in Minneapolis.

Charged with Underage DWI? Get a Free Consultation Today.

Key Facts About Minnesota's Zero-Tolerance Underage DWI Laws

Only 10 percent of licensed drivers are under the age of 21, yet they are responsible for 17 percent of all alcohol-related fatal crashes. Because underage drivers also tend to binge-drink more than adults, juvenile victims of car accidents on average have a blood alcohol content that is far above the legal limit.

Minnesota’s “Under 21” law prohibits underage drivers from the following:

  • Drinking alcohol without parental permission and supervision
  • Purchasing or attempting to purchase alcohol
  • Possessing alcohol with an intent to consume
  • Misrepresenting one’s age to purchase alcohol

Understanding the Different Types of Underage DWI Offenses

Violating the rules of Minnesota’s Under 21 statute is a misdemeanor and carries different penalties based on blood alcohol content and whether or not the driver has had previous convictions.

Under Minnesota law, juveniles may be charged with one of two DWI offenses:

  • Not-a-Drop Violation: Because of Minnesota’s “Not-a-Drop” law, minors can be charged with a DWI If there is any amount of alcohol in their body while driving, meaning that they have a BAC below .08. Violating this law is a misdemeanor with a maximum fine of $1,000, up to 90 days of jail time, and up to 90 days of license suspension. Second-time offenders will face a 180-day license suspension and additional penalties.
  • Standard DWI Charges for Minors: Underage drivers with a BAC over the legal limit of .08 will be treated as adults if they are 16 or older. If convicted for a first-time offense, they will be subject to full DWI penalties, including imprisonment for 90 days or more, a fine of up to $3,000, and a license suspension of 180 days (or 360 days if they had another minor in the car.) Additionally, underage drivers may lose their auto insurance policies, or they may face increased premiums that will stay with them for up to five years.

Underage drivers also run the risk of being charged with other related crimes, including:

  • Distributing alcohol to minors
  • Soliciting alcohol
  • Child endangerment
  • Minor in possession
  • Possession of false ID

Choose Caplan & Tamburino for Experienced Juvenile DWI Defense

If your child is facing DWI charges, you should contact a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. The charges they face now could have a negative effect on their futures. Make sure you do all that you can to protect your child’s future by retaining the sound legal counsel of attorneys who are familiar with Minnesota law and who know how to best handle juvenile crimes cases.

Why Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm Stands Out:

  • Our team is available 24/7. When our clients need us, we’re there for them.
  • Both of our partners have formerly worked as prosecutors in Minnesota.
  • We have represented thousands of clients and handled hundreds of jury trials.
  • We have more than 100 years of criminal defense experience.
  • Attorney Joseph Tamburino is Board Certified Criminal Law Specialists.
  • When you call, we’ll start your case with a FREE, no-obligation consultation.

Together, our Minneapolis attorneys bring over 100 years of criminal defense experience to the table. We have also represented thousands of clients and led hundreds of court trials, including acquittals and dismissals in juvenile DUI cases. Clients know they can count on us to fight for them relentlessly and aggressively. All you need to do is share the facts with us, and we can handle the rest.

Need a Skilled DUI Lawyer for Your Teen? Call Us Now for Help!


  • 1. Don’t Talk to the Police!

    It’s crucial to know that while you should remain respectful with authorities, you have the right to remain silent. This a right protected by the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which makes it clear individuals are protected from being compelled to be a witness against him / herself in criminal matters.

    It’s important to note that:

    • Talking will not help you avoid an arrest. If law enforcement has probable cause to arrest you, then they will arrest you.
    • By speaking, you risk making a confession or providing information that can be used to indict you, even unknowingly.
    • Even if you feel that information being discussed is “harmless,” it is still in your best interest to invoke your Fifth Amendment right.
  • 2. Ask for a Lawyer!
    As soon as you can you should elect your right to have a defense attorney present. A Minnesota criminal defense lawyer or public defender can ensure the police do not violate your rights and help you avoid saying anything incriminating during questioning. Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so that we can be by your side whenever you need us. Call now!

Making a Difference for OUR CLIENTS

  • I cannot thank you enough for your help!

    “Your patience, knowledge and especially your attention to detail was admirable.”

  • This settlement has completely changed my life.

    “This settlement has completely changed my life. I appreciate Joe and Hannah’s tireless effort.”

  • Thank you for being so supportive

    “I just want to say that I don’t know any lawyers who would do what you did for your client.”

  • Thank you!

    “I just wanted to say thank you again for helping me out with everything.”

  • Thank you again.

    “When Kayla answered the telephone I felt like somebody truly had my back and cared about protecting me.”

Why Choose Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A.?

  • We’ll start your case with a FREE, no-obligation consultation
  • Attorney Joseph Tamburino is a Board Certified Criminal Law Specialist, achieved by only 3% of Attorneys
  • We have represented thousands of clients and we have handled hundreds of jury trials
  • Our attorneys have worked as prosecutors and public defenders throughout the state
  • Our team is available 24/7 – when our clients need us, we’re there for them


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