Consumption of alcohol by persons under age 21 is a persistent problem for law enforcement and an offense that can have serious consequences for anyone involved.
In Illinois, the legal drinking age is 21 for all alcoholic beverages. Underage drinkers violate the law when they commit the following infractions:
Illinois' "Use It & Lose It"/zero tolerance law became effective on January 1, 1995. It set the acceptable blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level for drivers under the age of 21 at .00.
Penalties for violating the laws are stiff. Unlawful consumption or possession of alcohol by a minor will lead to a suspension of the minor's driving privileges.
The fine can range from $500 to $2,500 and/or one to 364 days in jail. The use of a false I.D. card can lead to a fine of $25,000 or three years in jail.
Adults over age 21, who provide alcohol to or for minors, also violate the law and face criminal penalties. For the illegal sale or furnishing of alcohol to minors, there is a penalty of up to $2,500 and/or 364 days in jail.
For further information about this and other law-related issues, contact an Illinois State Bar Association member-lawyer in your area or visit www.isbalawyers.com.