Possession of Alcohol by a Minor

A charge of minor in possession commonly referred to as a MIP, means that the defendant, being a person under the age of 21 years, has been issued a citation by a police officer or Texas Alcohol Beverage Control Officer for being illegally in possession, ownership, or control of an alcoholic beverage. The principal element of this crime, which must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, is the possession, ownership, or control of an alcoholic beverage.

Those under 21 are at risk of a MIP citation at parties, nightclubs, or even while riding in a vehicle when alcohol is present. With all the possible scenarios in which you can be charged with possession of alcohol by a minor, this is a common offense across the state, but even so, still comes with tough penalties that should be avoided. Even though this is considered a misdemeanor, a conviction can still follow you on your permanent record if not taken care of in the proper fashion.

Due to the possibility of this becoming a bigger issue than it needs to be, working with a criminal defense attorney will enable you to efficiently and professionally fight the charges and move on with your life.

Possession of Alcohol by a Minor

Possession of Alcohol by a Minor Defense Lawyer in Irving, Dallas, Carrolton, Richardson, TX

If you have been charged with the offense of possession of alcohol by a minor, immediately figuring out what your options are, while preparing a defense strategy that effectively argues your case, is vital in making sure this offense does not come back to haunt you in the future.

Contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today at (972) 233-5700 for a consultation about your alleged offense in Irving, Dallas, Carrolton, Richardson, and surrounding areas of Dallas County, Texas. Our firm will work to potentially get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed.

Possession of Alcohol by a Minor under Texas Law

According to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code §106.05, possession of alcohol by a minor offense occurs if an individual under the age of 21 possesses an alcoholic beverage.

Possession of an alcoholic beverage includes situations involving “constructive possession.” An example of constructive possession is when a minor is in an automobile where alcohol is readily accessible to any minor passenger in that vehicle. This situation extends to alcohol that is on the car seat, floor, or stored in the trunk of an automobile in which the driver is a minor in possession of the keys that unlock the trunk. 

TABC §106.05 also specifically mentions that a minor may possess an alcoholic beverage:

  • while in the course and scope of the minor’s employment if the minor is an employee of a licensee or permittee and the employment is not prohibited by this code;
  • if the minor is in the visible presence of his adult parent, guardian, or spouse, or another adult to whom the minor has been committed by a court;  or
  • if the minor is under the immediate supervision of a commissioned peace officer engaged in enforcing the provisions of this code.

This offense is a considered Class C misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed $500.00. However, if a minor has 2 prior convictions, the punishment is a fine of not less than $250.00 or more than $2,000.00 and/or confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 6 months (§106.071).

Find A Dallas County Defense Attorney for Possession of Alcohol by a Minor Charges | Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy

Although seemingly a minor offense compared to other crimes, possession of alcohol by a minor conviction can lead to legal and professional problems down the road.  A conviction will be added to your permanent record, which you will most likely have to disclose before getting a job or applying for college or grad school.

With the possibility of this charge becoming a major issue, working with a criminal defense lawyer to make certain this offense is tackled in the most effective and timely manner is paramount. Meeting this charge head-on will increase your chances of getting it dismissed so that you can focus on more important things in life without the overhanging worry that this will come back to bite you at some point in the future.

Contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today at (972) 233-5700 for a consultation about your alleged offense in Irving, Dallas, Carrolton, Richardson, and surrounding areas of Dallas County, Texas. Our firm will work to potentially get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed.

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