If you’re a parent of a teenage son or daughter, you’re concerned
about their safety. If you’re like most parents, you’re afraid
of them climbing into a car with a drunk driver, or driving drunk themselves.
After all, you probably did some stupid things when you were their age.
Haven’t we all?
Whether you’re in your 30s, 40s or 50s, it probably seems like yesterday
when you were a teenager. During your youth, you may have felt like you
were invincible. You might have even driven drunk once or twice when you
were a kid, which is why parents of teens know quite well what their own
kids could do when they’re out partying with friends. It’s
a scary reality that all parents are all too aware of.
Even Boy Scouts Get DUIs
You might have a straight A student, a Boy or Girl Scout, or an honor student
who tutors math to help other kids out. They could be the best kid in
the world, but that doesn’t mean they won’t succumb to peer
pressure in an effort to “look cool” or binge drink one night
and try to drive home without even realizing it.
If you’ve already tried to “scare your kid straight”
but you’re still worried that the message hasn’t sunk in,
here are some other words of advice to give them:
California is a “zero tolerance” state.
This means that the .08%
BAC rule doesn’t apply to people
under the age of 21. Your teenager can get a DUI if they are caught driving with
any detectable alcohol in their system – even one beer!
They can get a DUI for prescriptions, Spice or marijuana.
Lots of teens these days smoke pot, use synthetic
marijuana known as “Spice” and drive under the influence of prescription
medications. They need to know that they can get a DUI for driving under
the influence of alcohol or
any controlled substance, including their ADHD medication.
They’ll lose their license.
If a teen is convicted of a
simple DUI in California, they’ll likely lose their driver’s license
for one year. They also face fines, community service, and mandatory
DUI school, up to five years of DUI probation, and time in county jail.
A DUI can block educational opportunities.
A DUI can be a problem when it comes to college. Some colleges won’t
accept an applicant with a DUI. If an applicant lies about their DUI and
the college later finds out, the student can be kicked out. If a student
is trying to get a scholarship, they can lose it because of their criminal
record. Some college sport teams won’t allow a student to join or
remain on a team with a DUI. In some cases, a DUI can ruin a kid’s
Tell your kid you’ll be their DD any time.
Sure, we hope that our teens won’t drink until they’re 21
and mature enough to drink responsibly, but how realistic is that expectation?
As parents, it’s critically important that we tell our kids that
they can call us any time day or night for a ride if they have been drinking,
or if their “ride” has been drinking.
Even if we encourage them to call Uber or Lyft instead of waking us up
at 2:00 a.m., that doesn’t mean that they won’t have the money
one night, or that they won’t need us for some other reason. Like
the old saying goes, “It’s better to be safe than sorry,”
and there’s no worse pain than losing a child to drunk driving.
So, if you usually turn your phone on silent when you go to bed, it may
be time to turn the volume back on in case you get a call in the middle
of the night from your son or daughter!
When You Need an Orange County DUI Attorney
If you gave your teen all of the lectures in the world and they still managed
to get a DUI, contact the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc. for
help. Attorney Virginia Landry is not only a member of the
National College for DUI Defense, she’s a
Board-Certified DUI defense specialist. When your kid deserves nothing but the best,
contact our office for the hard-hitting defense they need!