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What happens when a teen drinks and drives in Colorado?

Teens sometimes get into trouble. They might play their music too loudly or get into fights at school. One thing parents never want to find out is that their newly licensed teen has been drinking and driving. Not only is drinking underage illegal, but drinking and driving is illegal as well. It's also extremely dangerous.

Colorado is strict when it comes to underage drinking and driving. In Denver, for example, there is a zero-tolerance law for any underage drinking and driving. An Underage Drinking and Driving Offense (UDD), applies to drivers under the age of 21 who have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.02 to 0.05. If your BAC is higher than 0.05, then you are treated like an adult. Teens and those under 21 who drink and drive with a BAC of .05 or higher face the same penalties as any adult who is charged with drinking and driving.

A DUI or UDD does go on your record. That means that jobs, schools and other businesses can see the record and make decisions based on it. It makes it harder to get jobs, get into schools, to obtain an apartment and can affect personal and professional relationships.

Fortunately, DUIs and UDDs may be able to be expunged, especially when they're on the records of young adults. Your attorney can help you understand if your teen could have a conviction expunged and will work to help prevent a conviction in the first place. There are many possible defenses, and it's important to look into them as soon as possible.

Source: FindLaw, "Your Boulder DWI Case: The Basics," accessed March 10, 2017

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