COVID-19 UPDATE: Jason R. Antoine, Attorney at Law, remains open remotely to serve our community and assist them with their needs. We can be reached by phone, e-mail, contact form, and video conference.

Underage DUI

In Delaware, if you are under the age of 21 years old, it is illegal to drive a vehicle after consuming "alcoholic liquor." This is known as a "zero tolerance DUI" or an "underage DUI." The police may prove an underage DUI by submitting proof that the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .02% or more within 4 hours of driving. A BAC of .02% within 4 hours of driving or more is per se evidence that you were drinking alcoholic liquor. The police can submit an analysis of your breath, blood, urine or saliva to prove the BAC was above .02%. The police can also prove their case using other admissible evidence such as an admission to drinking alcohol, an odor of alcohol coming from your breath, empty beer cans in the car, slurred speech or unsteady gait, or other relevant evidence.

Underage DUI Penalties

The penalties for an underage DUI can include

  • CouLoss of license
    • o 2 months for a first offense
    • o 6-12 months for a second offense
  • CouDrug and alcohol evaluation
  • CouDUI classes
  • CouProbation (maximum of 1 year)
  • CouFines
    • o $200 for a first offense
    • o $400 to $1000 for each subsequent offense
  • CouPlea of guilty.
    • o Misdemeanor on record
  • CouAdministrative penalties for college students
    • o (University of Delaware students - possible expulsion of 1 semester)
  • CouPossible increased car insurance rates or termination from policy

The underage DUI statute can be found at 21 Del.C. §4177B. There may be better alternatives than pleading guilty to an "underage DUI." Lesser included offenses such as Reckless driving alcohol related may be a better alternative to pleading guilty and having your license suspended and a guilty plea on your record.

Contact Us

Do not let an underage DUI affect your education or the early stages of your career. If you or your son or daughter are facing charges of an underage DUI contact Jason R. Antoine, DUI lawyer at (302) 482-4802. Jason routinely handles underage DUI cases at Alderman's Court 40 in the City of Newark and at the Court of Common Pleas located in the City of Wilmington. Jason served as a DUI prosecutor in Pennsylvania and has tried to verdict many high stakes DUI cases in the State of Delaware.