Written by attorney Brenton Daniel Vincenzes

Virginia DUI - Under 21 Years of Age

** Fairfax DUI Attorney** Explains: Under 21

The Code of Virginia § 18.2-266.1 covers the penalties for driving after illegally consuming alcohol. This code section states:

“It shall be unlawful for any person under the age of 21 to operate any motor vehicle after illegally consuming alcohol."

The specific penalties contained in this law (18.2-266.1) apply to drivers under the age of 21 with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .02 or more, but less than .08%. But persons under age 21 with a BAC of .08 or higher are penalized the same as drivers 21 or older. Follow this link to view our Fairfax DUI Lawyer's page covering adult DWI and DUI penalties.

How are drivers under age 21 punished if the BAC level is .02 or higher, but less than .08?

A violation of § 18.2-266.1 is a Class 1 misdemeanor. The punishment shall include:

  • loss of driver’s license for a period of one year from the date of conviction, and;
  • a fine of $500 or 50 hours of community service.

A Class 1 misdemeanor is a serious offense, because a judge has the authorization by law to impose the following maximum penalties:

  • up to one year in jail.
  • up to a $2,500 fine…or both.

Under this code section, the license is suspended for a period of one year in addition to any immediate “administrative license suspension" period pursuant to Virginia Code § 46.2-391.2. This period differs depending upon the previous record of the convicted individual.

Advantage of Alcohol Safety Action Program

With regard to license forfeiture under § 18.2-266.1, an Alcohol Safety Action Program may be requested or ordered by the Court (but it is always in the Court’s discretion). The main advantage is that the Court may issue a restricted driver’s license, allowing the driver to still use his or her vehicle to travel to work, school, and/or other circumstances, if approved by the Court.

If you or a child of yours has been arrested and charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in Northern Virginia, it is important to contact a lawyer. Our local Fairfax DUI attorney offers a free in-person or phone consultation, and/or a free online case-evaluation.

Don't Miss: Join our Fairfax County Driver's Google + Group

About Us:

Vincenzes Law, PLLC, is a criminal defense firm in Fairfax, Virginia. Brenton D. Vincenzes is a Fairfax criminal defense attorney who offers free consultations (with no set time limit), flat fee quotations (as opposed to hourly billing), and several generous discounts. If charged in Northern Virginia, take advantage of our offer and ask for a free case evaluation. Vincenzes Law offers free case evaluations by email, or in-person.

Disclaimer:This guide is not legal advice. It is intended to be used for informational purposes only. Do not rely on anything you read on the internet, regardless of the source. If faced with a criminal accusation, investigation, or charge, please consult a licensed attorney with criminal law experience.

Additional resources provided by the author

§ 18.2-266. Driving motor vehicle, engine, etc., while intoxicated, etc § 18.2-266.1. Persons under age 21 driving after illegally consuming alcohol; penalty. § 18.2-267. Preliminary analysis of breath to determine alcoholic content of blood. § 18.2-268.1. Chemical testing to determine alcohol or drug content of blood; definitions. § 18.2-268.2. Implied consent to post-arrest testing to determine drug or alcohol content of blood. § 18.2-268.3. Refusal of tests; penalties; procedures § 18.2-268.4. Trial and appeal for refusal. § 18.2-268.5. Qualifications and liability of persons authorized to take blood sample; procedure for taking samples. § 18.2-268.9. Assurance of breath-test validity; use of breath-test results as evidence. § 19.2-187.1. Procedures for notifying accused of certificate of analysis; waiver; continuances § 18.2-268.10. Evidence of violation of driving under the influence offenses. § 18.2-269. Presumptions from alcohol or drug content of blood. § 18.2-270. Penalty for driving while intoxicated; subsequent offense; prior conviction. § 18.2-270.1. Ignition interlock systems; penalty. § 18.2-271. Forfeiture of driver’s license for driving while intoxicated. § 18.2-271.1. Probation, education and rehabilitation of person charged or convicted; person convicted under law of another state.

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