Summer is here and warm weather activities often involve alcohol, especially in water adjacent communities such as Ocean City, Maryland.
However, like many states, Maryland does have a legal drinking age. It is illegal for a person under the age of 21 to possess or consume an alcoholic beverage.
Those under the age of 21 who are found to have purchased, possessed or consumed alcohol, face a fine of $500 for the first offense and $1,000 for the second or subsequent offense.
Those over the age of 21 who knowingly furnish alcohol to a minor, face a fine of up to $2500 for the first violation and a fine of up to $5000 for a second or subsequent violation.
However, if a person under the age of 21 is working for an employer that has a valid liquor license issued by the state, the underage employee is allowed to possess, but not consume, alcoholic beverages if the job requires the handling of alcohol.
Drivers under the age of 21 years are legally drunk when their blood alcohol level is more than .02. A DWI can be issued if your blood alcohol concentration exceeds .02 and you are under the age of 21.
If you are under 21 and you violate an alcohol restriction, you are required to participate in the ignition interlock program or face license suspension. If the assignment to the interlock program is for a second alcohol violation in five years, participation in the ignition interlock program is determined by how many times you have been assigned to interlock because of one of these violations.
State law forbids open containers with any amount of alcohol inside the passenger area of a motor vehicle. Passengers of a vehicle are also prohibited from consuming alcohol in the passenger area, but the law does provide exceptions for non-drivers in the back of hired vehicles such as limousines.
If you are under the age of 21 and found to be in possession of a fake ID, you can be fined up to $500 and two months in prison. Twelve points will be assessed against your driving record and your driver’s license could be suspended or revoked.
Those caught selling counterfeit IDs in Maryland, face fines of up to $2000 and up to two years in prison for each fake ID sold and are also subject to prosecution for violating federal and homeland security laws.
An Ocean City underage drinking defense lawyer can help you with your Ocean City underage drinking charge. An experienced Baltimore underage drinking attorney can go over the facts of your case to determine the best defense, including whether the underage drinking charges can be reduced or dismissed. The consultation is free.
The Law Office of Thomas J. Maronick is open during the pandemic and will continue to meet your Ocean City and surrounding areas, Baltimore city and Baltimore county legal needs. We can meet with you remotely if you have access to Zoom. You can contact Thomas Maronick on his cellphone at 410-885-1775, the law office at 410-885-1775 or via our website for a free consultation.