Minor in Possession Explained


This website provides information about the minor in possession, or MIP statewide laws, exceptions, defense and penalties.  A minor in possession of alcohol is a civil infraction and is subject to civil penalty.  Punishments for MIP’s are different from state-to-state.  Alcohol enforcement is the responsibility of each individual state, and therefore, only local and state agencies are legally responsible to write a MIP citation.  Also, each state has its own separate fines and punishments for a MIP.

MIP laws are enforced differently from state to state, with some states prosecuting minors to the fullest extent of the law.  In some states, a minor who is charged for a MIP may be able to receive probation by entering a program that is ordered by the court called a diversionary program, as well as getting medical help.

A Minor in possession (MIP) charge can be made if:

  • Alcohol was in the minor’s possession
  • A minor attempting to buy alcohol
  • A minor caught drinking alcohol

Possible penalties for a MIP include:

  • Fines up to $500 or more
  • Suspension of driver’s license
  • Probation
  • Community service
  • Mandatory enrollment in a alcohol and drug class

A minor charged in a MIP can have an impact on their future in regards to career choices and education options.  By hiring an attorney, a minor charged with MIP may help them in the charges or penalties being reduced.  It is also essential to have legal representation since insurance and other factors could be affected with a MIP charge.

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