Hackensack NJ Providing Alcohol to Minors Lawyer
Underage Drinking and Alcohol Charges Attorney in Bergen County, New Jersey
In New Jersey, underage possession or consumption of alcohol (underage drinking) is a crime. Unbeknownst to many, providing alcohol to minors is also a criminal offense, whether it involves selling, serving, or buying alcohol for a person who is not yet 21. Providing alcohol to minors is extremely common. In fact, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 56.2% of underage drinkers between the ages of 12 and 20 had last consumed alcohol in someone else’s home. In addition, 22.3% gave money to someone who was of legal age to purchase it for them, 37.4% received it from an unrelated person of legal drinking age, and 21.1% received it from a parent, guardian, or other adult family member. Nevertheless, New Jersey takes this extremely seriously, prosecuting those who provide alcohol to minors to the fullest extent of the law.
Alissa Hascup is an award-winning criminal defense attorney who represents clients charged with supplying alcohol to minors and other offense across New Jersey. Having formerly served as a Municipal and Superior Court prosecutor, she has accumulated a wealth of experience on both sides of the criminal justice system. Now, she utilizes her comprehensive understanding of the law to develop the most effective defenses for her clients. In fact, she was recently named one of the 10 Best Attorneys in Client Satisfaction by the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys. With offices in Bergen, Morris, Passaic, and Camden county, Ms. Hascup regularly appears in courts in Middlesex, Edison, Union, Montclair, Hackensack, and throughout New Jersey. If you or someone you love has been charged with providing alcohol to minors or another criminal or DWI offense in New Jersey, contact The Law Offices of Alissa Hascup anytime at 862-257-1200 to receive a cost-free consultation.
Providing Alcohol to Minors in New Jersey: N.J.S.A. 2C:33-17
As mentioned above, providing alcohol to minors is a criminal offense in New Jersey, outlined in section N.J.S.A. 2C:33-17 of the New Jersey Criminal Code. According to this statute, it is unlawful to purposely or knowingly offer, serve, or make alcohol available to an underage person. It is also illegal to entice or encourage an underage person to drink alcohol. Additionally, it is considered a violation of this section to make property that you own, lease, or manage available to underage people for the purpose of consuming alcohol, or to leave your property in the care of another person with the purpose that alcohol will be consumed by, or made available to, underage people. Consider that this may lead to charges against a parent who leaves their underage child at home if the minor holds a gathering or party where alcohol is consumed by underage people.
Notably, there is an exception included in the law, which allows parents who are of legal age to provide alcohol to their own children in their home, or for a religious observance, ritual, or ceremony. The law also does not apply to a person who offers, or serves, or makes alcohol available, to an underage person if the person’s parent is present and gives their permission.
Penalties for Providing Alcohol to Minors in New Jersey
Providing alcohol to minors is a classified as a disorderly persons offense in New Jersey, which may entail penalties including: a sentence to serve up to 6 months in the county jail, a fine of up to $1,000.00, and a charge on your criminal record. Disorderly persons offenses are adjudicated at the local municipal court associated with the town in which the alleged offense occurred. In other words, if you were charged with providing alcohol to minors in Hackensack, you will be required to appear in Hackensack Municipal Court. Many times, college students accused of buying alcohol for their underage friends, or serving alcohol to underage people at house parties, will be charged with these offenses. For instance, if you are charged with supplying alcohol to minors near Rutgers in New Brunswick, you will be required to appear in the New Brunswick Municipal Court. In order to avoid a criminal record and the potential consequences of a conviction for providing alcohol to minors, it is highly advisable to have an experienced defense attorney on your side.
Contact a New Brunswick NJ Providing Alcohol to Minors Attorney
If you have been charged with providing alcohol to minors or another alcohol-related crime in New Jersey, contact The Law Offices of Alissa Hascup to discuss your case. Simply call 862-257-1200 today to receive your cost-free consultation or schedule an appointment. With offices in Hackensack, Little Falls, Morristown, and Camden, we are happy to meet you at the location nearest you.