Getting a phone call from the police that your teenager has been arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) is among the worst any parent can receive. New Hampshire penalties for underage DWI are harsh, and a DWI conviction on a teenager’s record can have long-lasting consequences that can follow them for a long time.
If you are a concerned parent in this situation, here is how you can help your child through the next steps of the legal process:
Hire an attorney
New Hampshire doesn’t give any special treatment to minors arrested for DWI, and in fact, a driver under the age of 21 can face a DWI charge with just a small amount of alcohol in their system. A person could register the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for underage drivers of 0.02 after just one drink.
An experienced DWI attorney can help minimize or even eliminate potential consequences – so you want one on your side as soon as possible.
Learn as much as you can about DWI law
Your lawyer will be handling the heavy lifting, but an informed client (or their parent) is always an asset. With a working knowledge of the charges your child is facing, you can help them understand the seriousness of the offense, especially in the case of an aggravated DWI.
With a BAC of 0.02 or higher, a juvenile driver can be charged with aggravated DWI if any of these factors exist:
- Going 30 mph or more over the speed limit
- Caused an accident leading to serious bodily harm
- Eluded or attempted to elude police
- Had a passenger younger than 16 in the car
Depending on the severity of the offense, underage DWI sentences could include license suspension, fines, enrollment in an impaired driver care management program, impaired driver education, or even an ignition interlock system placed on a vehicle they will be driving.
Be aware of the potential consequences beyond the legal system
A DWI conviction can follow a teenager well into adulthood. College admissions counselors and employers alike could ask about criminal history, and financial ramifications of a DWI could also reach years beyond a conviction. In addition to fines and court fees, a DWI conviction may also lead to insurance hikes or even court judgments or settlements if there was an accident involved.
If your teenager is facing DWI charges, contact Tenn And Tenn, P.A. or call (888) 332-5855 today to develop a plan of action.