Whether you have been arrested for a misdemeanor or a felony, you may face severe legal penalties. Even those charged with a misdemeanor still risk jail time. However, in many cases, a judge will opt to sentence individuals charged with misdemeanor crimes to probation in lieu of a more severe penalty. Probation is a privilege, and there are often various terms that you must abide by in order not to violate your probation and risk a harsher sentence. Depending on your crime and the terms surrounding your probation, you may or may not be allowed to drink alcohol.
Dod Law, APC is a California criminal defense law firm with over 18 years of experience helping defend our clients’ rights and interests. If you have been sentenced to probation in California, it is crucial that you speak with one of our trusted criminal defense lawyers. They can help you understand whether the terms of your probation make it illegal for you to drink alcohol while you serve your sentence.
What Will Happen if You Drink While on Probation in California?
Probation is a legal penalty typically sentenced to an individual instead of jail time or after short-term incarceration has been served. Because probation is a right and not a privilege, a person will have a suspended sentence hanging over their head throughout the term of probation. While on probation, you will give up many of your rights.
People often wonder whether or not they will be legally able to drink alcohol while on probation, and the answer depends on the details of the crime they have been sentenced for. However, if the convicted individual is under the age of 21, the legal drinking age, regardless of the details of your probation terms, it will be illegal for them to consume alcohol. If you were convicted of a crime that involved drugs or alcohol, abstaining from these substances is often a term of probation. Examples of when it may be illegal to drink alcohol while on probation in California include:
- You were charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- A substance abuse issue was discovered during the litigation process of your case
- Domestic violence cases where drugs or alcohol were involved in the incident or led to the violent behavior
While not drinking alcohol may be a term of your probation, it may not specifically be addressed by the court when you are sentenced. That is why it is crucial that you fully understand what is expected of you while you serve your term. To ensure you fully understand the terms of your probation, speak with a trusted criminal defense lawyer.
What Happens if You Violate Probation in California?
You may face serious legal consequences if caught violating your probation in California. Whether you have violated probation as a result of drinking alcohol illegally or any other reason, your actions may result in the following consequences:
- Revoke your probation
- Sentenced to California state prison for the maximum time of your original offense
- Revoke and reinstate your probation with new terms like:
- Jail time
- Lengthier probation term
To ensure that you do not violate your probation terms, it is essential that you sit down with a California criminal justice lawyer who can help you understand what not to do throughout your term.
Contact a California Criminal Defense Attorney Today
Dod Law has cultivated effective criminal defense strategies in this practice area that have helped our clients overcome various charges. We work to preserve your rights in every way possible. To get help navigating your probation, contact our team of trusted lawyers. Schedule a free consultation by filling out our contact form or calling (619) 814-5110.