James M. Porfido, Attorney at Law, LLC

Minor in possession: Help your child defend against charges

As a parent, your children likely bring considerable joy to your life. Of course, this joy likely also came coupled with an insurmountable worry for your children's wellbeing and safety. Because you cannot constantly monitor their every move, your children will undoubtedly land themselves in some sort of trouble at some point in their lives. Though discipline also comes along with parenthood, you may feel more out of your element if one of your children faces criminal charges.

One of the most common situations teenagers end up in involves underage alcohol possession. Though you did your best to instill a sense of responsibility in your child when it comes to alcohol, making mistakes comes with growing up. If your child has minor in possession, or MIP, charges brought against him or her, you may want to understand the situation to the best of your ability.

MIP factors

Seemingly trivial actions could put your child in the line of fire for MIP charges. If he or she simply held an unopened container of alcohol, such allegations could come about. Specific factors that could lead to charges and potential convictions include:

  • Possession of alcohol by a minor
  • Attempted purchase of alcohol by a minor
  • Consumption of alcohol by a minor

It may also prove important to note that in this context, "minor" refers to individuals under the legal drinking age of 21.

Defense options

You undoubtedly do not want a conviction for criminal charges to negatively affect your child's life. Therefore, you will likely want to explore defense options that could help prove your child's innocence in the matter. For example, if you or your child can prove that the container he or she held did not actually contain alcohol, a conviction might not occur.

Additionally, the circumstances of the particular situation could provide opportunities for other defense tactics. If your child was on your property with you in attendance at the time of the arrest and had your permission to consume alcohol, this scenario falls under an exception to the MIP regulation. If the alcohol consumption took place as part of a religious service, MIP regulations also do not apply.

Finding the best method to approach your child's case can feel like a daunting task. Your main goal certainly pertains to getting him or her out of the situation with the best outcomes, and you may worry that you do not have the best ability to achieve that outcome on your own. Luckily, you can seek help from an experienced New Jersey attorney could can review your child's case and determine the best courses of action.

Contact Information

James M. Porfido, Attorney at Law, LLC
23 Cattano Avenue
At Chancery Square
Morristown, NJ 07960

Toll Free: 877-760-4138
Phone: 973-828-0811
Fax: 973-683-1147
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