As a parent, there is nothing more concerning than to learn that your child is facing a problem that could negatively impact his or her future. If your Florida teenager is facing criminal charges associated with underage drinking, you may be wondering what you can do and how you can protect the interests of your kid. Juvenile offenses are serious, and they often require a serious defense strategy.
Underage drinking and drunk driving are some of the most common offenses committed by minors. The law has strict standards regarding accountability for those who break the law, even if they are underage. Your child has rights, and with help, you can work to preserve those rights and shield his or her future from a serious criminal conviction.
Minors and alcohol: more common than you may think
There have been many awareness campaigns and efforts made to combat underage drinking, yet it remains a prevalent problem. In 2017, 7.4 million people between the ages of 12 and 20 in the United States admit to consuming alcohol. While the levels of underage individuals engaging in binge drinking and other troubling behaviors is decreasing, it is still a national concern.
You may think that your teenager or college student is immune to the temptation of drinking alcohol, and it can be quite a shock to find your child facing significant legal trouble because of an unfortunate decision. Consider the following facts about teenagers and underage drinking:
- Over the last few decades, the numbers of underage drinking have decreased. However, it still happens at a rate that is higher than most adults realize.
- Even among middle school students, binge drinking occurs. While the overall numbers have decreased, it is still a troubling concern.
- Drinking among underage college-age students is particularly prevalent, and binge drinking is also a concern for this age group as well.
Your child may have made a mistake at a party or while at a friend's house, but the consequences of even a first-time offense of alcohol possession or drunk-driving can be severe.
What is next for your child?
Parents hoping to help their child navigate the legal challenges ahead will find it beneficial to seek guidance as soon as possible after their child's arrest. While there is much at stake, you can provide your loved one with an experienced defense and compassionate support. Underage individuals would be wise to take their situations seriously and work to confront any criminal charges against them.