Family Defense Attorney in Philadelphia
All states prohibit underage drinking. In turn, they also prohibit adults from giving alcohol to minors. However, most states have some exceptions. It’s important to understand the rules. Our criminal defense attorney team explains the charge of furnishing alcohol to a minor as well as the religious exception that applies in the State of Pennsylvania.
Can a parent give alcohol to a minor in Pennsylvania?
It is against the law for parents to give alcohol to a minor in Pennsylvania. There is no parental exception in Pennsylvania’s law for furnishing alcohol to a minor. A parent may not furnish alcohol to a minor even in a private home.
What is considered furnishing alcohol to a minor in Pennsylvania?
Furnishing alcohol to a minor is in violation of Pennsylvania law 18 § 6310.1. The law says that no person may knowingly and intentionally sell or furnish, or purchase with the intent to furnish, alcohol to anyone who is under 21 years old. In addition, Pennsylvania law 47 § 4-493 prohibits licensed sellers from furnishing alcohol to a visibly intoxicated person or a minor.
Are there any exceptions?
Religious ceremonies are an exception to the law that prohibits giving alcohol to a minor. A minor may consume the amount that is reasonable and traditional for the ceremony. The ceremony must take place in a private place. If you are charged with a violation, your criminal defense attorney can help you raise the religious exception if it is applicable.
What is the penalty for giving alcohol to a minor in Pennsylvania?
It is a third-degree misdemeanor to give alcohol to a minor in Pennsylvania. The maximum jail time is 90 days along with a maximum fine of $500. In addition, the court must impose a minimum fine of $1,000 for a first offense. For second and subsequent offenses, the minimum fine is $2,500.
Most courts take charges of furnishing alcohol to a minor seriously. Even though underage drinking may be common in society, giving alcohol to a minor is a serious offense. The person charged faces significant scrutiny from the court including potential fines and jail time.
However, with the help of a criminal defense attorney, you can fight back. There is intent required for charges of giving alcohol to a minor. The district attorney must prove that the defendant purposefully intended to provide the alcohol. The defendant has the right to challenge the charges against them including taking their case to trial.
Attorneys for Charges of Giving Alcohol to a Minor
If you are charged with giving alcohol to a minor, our attorneys can help. We represent people who are charged with furnishing to a minor. The district attorney must prove the charges against you. You have the right to take your case to trial.
Our law firm can help you evaluate the charges and respond in the best way. Contact us today to talk about your case and how we can help you fight charges of providing alcohol to a minor.