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Alcohol and Minors: Never a Good Mix in IllinoisIt is not uncommon for teenagers to get in trouble with the law. When they do, the offenses they are known for committing are usually minor, yet serious offenses like theft, vandalism and traffic violations. One of the most common reasons teenagers get in trouble with the law is because of alcohol-related offenses. In all 50 states and the District of Columbia, you are required to be at least 21 years old to legally possess, purchase and/or consume alcohol. If you are caught drinking while under the age of 21, or if you are caught providing alcohol to someone under the age of 21, you could be facing serious fines and other consequences that could follow you for the rest of your life.

Possession or Consumption of Alcohol by a Person Under the Age of 21

In Illinois, consequences of underage drinking vary, but the person will likely be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. This means the person could face up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines. Additionally, that person’s driving privileges will be affected. If they receive court supervision, their license will be suspended for three months. If they are convicted, their license will be suspended for six months.

Providing Alcohol to a Person Under the Age of 21

It is also illegal for a person who is able to purchase alcohol to provide alcohol to a person who is under the age of 21. Doing so can result in a Class A misdemeanor charge, which carries possible consequences of up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines. This also includes providing alcohol to minors at a private residence under Illinois’ social host law. A minimum $500 fine will be imposed for a misdemeanor violation, with possible fines of up to $2,500. If death or serious bodily injury occurs, felony charges will be imposed, which can lead to up to three years in jail and up to $25,000 in fines.

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