Underage drinking is a big problem in this country. The truth is, people between the ages of 12 and 20 consume 11% of the total alcohol consumed in this country each year. Underage drinking comes with both physical and emotional risks, as well as financial. Below, you will learn about the financial burdens associated with underage drinking.
Fines for Underage Drinking
Individuals convicted of underage drinking in Pennsylvania face fines of up to $500 plus the additional court costs for the first offense. These fines will increase greatly on future offenses.
Fines for Providing Alcohol to Underage Individuals
Anyone that is convicted of providing alcohol to underage individuals will be penalized financially. The fines associated with supplying alcohol to minors in Pennsylvania start at $1,000 for the first offense. A second offense carries a fine of $2,500 and the possibility of a year in jail.
If a party is being held in your home and it is determined that you have supplied the alcohol, even unknowingly, you could face a fine of $1,000 for the first underage drinker and $2,500 for each additional individual.
Driver's License Repercussions
Although a driver's license suspension isn't directly a financial burden, the process to get it back is. First offense underage drinkers face a 90 day suspension and a 1 year suspension for the second. At the completion of the suspension, the driver licensing process will need to be completed from the start. This means that you must pay a license restoration fee and pay for the driver's exam.
Increased Insurance Premiums
Even if the underage drinking charges aren't a result of driving under the influence, the charge carries a driver's license suspension. That charge will remain on the driving record for several years. Insurance providers will look at this as a potential risk factor and increase the premium rates for the policy.
You can minimize the premium increases by maintaining a single policy for the household and avoid providing a car for the minor. If the minor shares a vehicle with a parent, the rates will be far lower than if the minor has a car of his or her own.
The underage drinking charge will show on background checks run by potential employers. This will make it more difficult to land a well-paying job. This charge shows a lack of responsibility and lack of respect for the law that employers will frown upon.
If someone in your household has been charged with underage drinking talk with your insurance provider, such as John L Lynch Agency, to learn how to minimize the impact on your policy. There is little that can be done about the other financial repercussions, but this will at least give you some relief with the burdens.