Minor in Possession of Alcohol will show up on your criminal record and driving record unless you have an attorney get your MIP ticket dismissed or reduced to a less serious offense.
Penalties For Minor In Possession Of Alcohol In Missouri
If you are a 1st-time offender and you plead guilty to Minor in Possession of Alcohol in Missouri, the maximum penalty is:
- $300 Fine
- No Jail Time
For a 2nd MIP ticket, the maximum punishment is:
- $1,000 fine and
- 1 year in jail
Driver’s License Suspended If Convicted Of Minor In Possession of Alcohol
- Your driver’s license will be suspended for 90 days if you plead guilty to an MIP ticket that was issued under Missouri’s “Abuse & Lose” law
- Your driver’s license will be revoked for 1 year if you plead guilty to MIP for a 2nd time under the “Abuse & Lose” law
Consult your attorney to find out if you have been charged under the “Abuse & Lose” law.
The Missouri Department of Revenue website has information about how to get your license reinstated after pleading guilty to an MIP ticket.
MIP Ticket Does Not Drop Off Your Criminal Record When You Turn 21
An MIP ticket DOES NOT “drop off” of your criminal record when you turn age 21 or after a certain number of years have passed.
Here’s what happens if you plead guilty to MIP/underage drinking:
- An MIP ticket stays on your CRIMINAL RECORD forever unless you get it expunged.
- An MIP ticket stays on your DRIVING RECORD forever unless you file a written request with the Missouri Department of Revenue asking for it to be removed
- A conviction for MIP/Underage Drinking may prevent you from getting a job or internship, renting an apartment, or being accepted into the college of your choice
Missouri allows you to expunge only 1 Minor in Possession of Alcohol conviction, and only if it’s a first-time offense.
FOR EXAMPLE: If you plead guilty to an MIP ticket at age 17, and then plead guilty to another MIP ticket 2 years later, neither the first nor the second MIP ticket will be eligible for expungement.
MIP expungement is a court procedure. You will need to hire an attorney to file the petition for expungement and appear at the hearing on your behalf.
For more information about MIP expungement, read my previous blog post “How To Keep An MIP Ticket Off Your Criminal Record.”
The Missouri Department of Revenue website also has information about its requirements for expungement of MIP records.
Hire An Attorney To Fight Your MIP Ticket
An experienced criminal defense attorney can fight your MIP ticket and get the charge reduced to a less serious offense such as “Littering.” Or they can get your MIP ticket completely dismissed after you successfully complete probation.
Some factors that are considered in cases of Minor in Possession of Alcohol:
- How old are you?
- Do you have any prior arrests, charges, or convictions on your criminal record?
- Is your case being prosecuted in municipal court or county circuit court?
- How much alcohol were you caught with?
- Was a motor vehicle involved?
- Were you polite and respectful to the police officer?
What To Do If You Can’t Afford An Attorney For Your MIP Ticket
Public defenders in most counties in Missouri don’t represent people for misdemeanors in municipal court.
However, if your Minor in Possession of Alcohol case is being prosecuted in county circuit court, it is possible that you could qualify to have a public defender represent you. You will have to prove that you have no income and no family to help you hire an attorney.
To find out if you qualify for a public defender, contact the Missouri public defender’s office in the county in which your case is being prosecuted and fill out an application for services.
For a free consultation about your Minor in Possession of Alcohol ticket, contact Missouri criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or at [email protected]