You’re only young once, right? You’ve heard stories about your parents sneaking into bars and borrowing their older sibling’s driver’s license to buy beer. They obviously lived a little, so why shouldn’t you?
Well, mostly because things have changed quite a bit since your parents were young. What once earned your parents a stern lecture and a warning can land you in jail.
Florida has zero tolerance for minors in possession of alcohol
Even with your parents’ consent, you can’t have a sip of beer or a glass of wine until you’re 21. Possession of alcohol by a minor (whether you’re drinking it or not) is treated as a misdemeanor offense — but that’s still quite serious. You can face up to 60 days in jail, a $500 fine, six months of probation and a suspended driver’s license if you’re convicted — not to mention the trouble you may have with your school.
Florida gets even tougher if you use a fake ID to obtain that alcohol
If you borrowed, swiped or printed an ID card to get that alcohol and you’re caught with it, you can be charged with a third-degree felony offense. That ups the stakes dramatically.
If convicted, you face up to $5,000 in fines and up to five years in prison. Plus, the damage to your future will likely be considerable. A felony on your record can prevent you from getting federal money for school, obtaining a professional license, finding housing and more.
Play it smart: Forgo the fake ID and forget about drinking until you’re of legal age. If you do make a mistake, however, speak with an experienced attorney before you speak with the police.