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Seattle Under 21 DUI Attorney

Seattle Juvenile DUI Offenses

Lawmakers in Washington want to keep roads safe and encourage young people to learn safe driving habits. When a juvenile drinks or consumes drugs and drives, lawmakers feel that they should be punished, even if they are not impaired.

Driving under the influence in Washington is a crime for everyone, regardless of age. If the driver is under the legal drinking age, however, penalties can be different. There are two different laws in Washington that deal with underage drivers and DUI.

Under 21 DUI Law in Seattle

The first law that applies to underage drivers is a special one especially for juveniles under 21.  If a driver is under the legal drinking age and is stopped by police with alcohol or drugs in their system but not enough to be considered intoxicated, lawmakers still want them to face penalties. For this reason, the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 46.61.503 states that a person can be guilty of underage DUI if 2 conditions apply:

  1. The suspect was under 21 years of age
  2. The suspect operated a vehicle within two hours of:
    • Having a blood-alcohol level of at least .02% but not more than .08% OR
    • Having a THC concentration above 0.00 but less than 5.00

A chemical sobriety test must be taken in order to determine intoxication. Unlike other DUI charges, it does not have to be proven that the driver was impaired in any way. The fact that the driver was a juvenile and was under the influence of THC or alcohol is enough to convict them of a 61.503 offense.

Conviction of underage DUI is a misdemeanor crime in Seattle.

Seattle DUI and Juveniles

The second law that applies to underage DUI violators is RCW 46.61.502. This is the same law that applies to adults as well. Regardless of their age, a driver can be charged with a DUI offense for violating 61.502.  Under this law, a person is guilty of DUI if they operate a vehicle and:

  • Within a two hour period, had an alcohol concentration of .08% or greater
  • Within a two hour period, had a THC concentration of 5.00 or more
  • Was impaired by drugs or alcohol
  • Was impaired by a combination of drugs or alcohol

If a driver is accused of any of these conditions, they will be arrested on suspicion of DUI regardless of their age. This is a gross misdemeanor and sentences are not lighter for juveniles involved in DUI cases.

Juvenile DUI Penalties in Seattle

The penalties for a juvenile DUI offense vary depending on the criminal record of the offender and the circumstances of the case. Any DUI case will involve administrative license suspension and a person only has 20 days after an arrest to request a DMV hearing to fight this suspension.

If a driver is convicted of Under 21 DUI under RCW 46.61.503, they will face the following penalties for a misdemeanor offense:

  • A minimum of 24 hours of jail time
  • A $250 -$500 minimum fine
  • License suspension that will be eligible for reinstatement after 90 days

A person convicted under RCW 46.61.502 for DUI will face the following penalties if they are under 21 if they are first time offenders:

  • 1 to 364 days of imprisonment (minimum 24 hours for a BAC under .15% and 48 hours for a BAC of over .15%)
  • A fine of $350 to $5000 (minimum fine for a BAC over .15% is $500)
  • License suspension that will be eligible for reinstatement after 90 days

A person under 21 with one prior DUI offense in a 7 year period will face the following penalties:

  • 30 to 364 days of imprisonment (minimum 30 days for a BAC under .15% and 45 days for a BAC of over .15%)
  • 60 to 90 days of home electronic monitoring
  • A fine of $500 to $5000 (minimum fine for a BAC over .15% is $750)
  • License suspension that will be eligible for reinstatement after 90 days
Seattle DUI Lawyer

If you or your child has been accused of DUI in Seattle, call our office right now. Attorney Steve Karimi is here to help you fight. He is a former prosecutor who knows what it takes to win DUI cases. A DUI conviction can have serious consequences for a young person, beyond their sentence. A DUI will show up on a background check which can prevent an offender from job, school admissions or even affect their chances at a scholarship or other achievement.

Don't let a juvenile DUI conviction affect your future, call us now for a free consultation and learn more about what we can do for you. Attorney Karimi will sit down with you and go over your case. He will answer any questions you have and explain your defense options.

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Contact Us Now!

Contact The Law Offices of Steve Karimi for a free consultation by calling us at 206-621-8777 or by completing the form in the sidebar. You will be put in touch with an top rated Seattle DUI attorney who will listen to you.

Seattle DUI Lawyer

If you have been charged with DUI in Seattle or the surrounding area, call The Law Offices of Steve Karimi. He has the skills and the experience to get you the best possible results. Do not trust your future to just anyone, get an experienced professional to defend you.