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Can I Be Charged With a Crime If Minors Drink in My Home?

Posted On: June 16th, 2017 by Bradley J. Groene

In Ohio, the legal drinking age is 21 years old. However, drinking is a rite of passage for many, with high schoolers and college students enjoying a drink or two at parties. While many parents know that their teens have tried a beer or glass or wine, is it illegal for adults to allow underage drinking?

Be careful when allowing underage people to drink, because you could face criminal charges. Ohio has social host laws in place that focus on alcohol consumption in underage children and how parents could be held liable for their acts.
With alcohol a factor in the leading causes of death among teens and young adults – homicide, suicide, unintentional injuries, and car accidents – the law is strict when it comes to furnishing alcohol to those who are underage.

To avoid civil and criminal penalties, seek legal help from a Cincinnati criminal defense lawyer at Luftman, Heck & Associates. Call us today at (513) 338-1890.

Social Host Laws in Ohio

Ohio’s Social Host Law – Ohio Revised Code §4301.69(A) – states:

“No person…shall furnish {beer or intoxicating liquor} to an underage person…unless the underage person is accompanied by a parent, spouse who is not an underage person or legal guardian.”

In addition, Ohio Revised Code §4301.69(B) states:

“No person who is the owner or occupant of any public or private place shall knowingly allow any underage person to remain in or on the premises while possessing or consuming beer or intoxicating liquor, unless the intoxicating liquor or beer is given to the person possessing or consuming it by that person’s parent, spouse who is not an underage person, or legal guardian, unless the parent, spouse who is not an underage person, or legal guardian is present at the time of the person’s possession or consumption of the beer or intoxicating liquor.”

Therefore, a parent can give alcohol to their own children, but not to other children – including their children’s friends. Also, a person who is 21 could give alcohol to a spouse who is 20, for instance.

Furthermore, this law applies to all adults, not just parents. No person is allowed to give alcohol to an underage person. This applies to bar owners, employers, teachers, homeowners, or anyone else a person under age 21 comes into contact with.

If you allow a person under age 21 to consume alcohol on your property, you could face a civil lawsuit for any injuries or deaths caused by the consent. You could also face up to six months in jail, a $1,000 fine, and confiscation of personal property.

Have You Allowed Minors to Drink in Your Home?

If you are accused of allowing minors to drink inside your Ohio home, seek legal defense immediately. Any type of alcohol-related offense can result in serious penalties. You could face jail time, fines, and confiscation of your personal property.

A Cincinnati criminal defense lawyer from Luftman, Heck & Associates can provide you with aggressive representation so you possibly get your charges reduced.

Don’t let this type of situation ruin your reputation. Contact Luftman, Heck & Associates today at (513) 338-1890 to schedule your free consultation.

Bradley Groene made an exceptionally difficult situation much easier to handle. He kept me informed of everything that was going to happen and got results for my case far better than I could have hoped for. I would highly recommend him for anyone who finds themselves in legal troubles.