What You Should Know About Underage DUI in South Carolina

Children will be children. They tend to think they are invincible and that nothing can hurt them. However, the state of South Carolina does not feel the same way, especially in regards to a minor driving while intoxicated. If you or your child needs help preparing for an upcoming case, please read on, then contact an experienced Chesterfield County DUI lawyer to learn what you should know about underage DUI in South Carolina.

What you should know about underage DUI in South Carolina

In South Carolina, if you are younger than 21 and caught driving under the influence, the penalties are determined by the number of times, if any, you have previously committed the offense and your level of intoxication. If this is your first offense, the penalties are as follows:

BAC less than .1%:

  • $400
  • Jail sentence between 2 and 30 days
  • Suspension of driver’s license for 6 months

BAC between .1% and .15%:

  • $500 fine
  • 3 to 30 days in jail
  • Suspension of driver’s license for 6 months

BAC above .15%:

  • $1,000 fine
  • 30 to 90 days in jail
  • 6 month license suspension
  • Installation of an ignition interlock device

How long will an underage DUI conviction stay on your record in South Carolina?

If you have been convicted of a DUI in South Carolina, it will remain on your criminal record forever. With that said, a DUI will be removed from your driving record after 10 years. Furthermore, DUI arrests are subject to investigation for up to 7 years after the date of arrest. They will also be available on any criminal background checks for the indefinite future. In many instances, convictions are a matter of public record and anyone determined enough can find them out. You could face severe disadvantages in employment, housing, government benefits, students loans and much more.

How can a Chesterfield County criminal defense attorney fight your charges?

Reaching out to a skilled Chesterfield criminal defense lawyer is an important first step. The potential defenses against DUI charges that your attorney will explore on your behalf include arguing that the law enforcement stop was unlawful and that the authorities improperly administered a Field Sobriety Test. If the officer failed to demonstrate the test, failed to explain all the instructions, failed to inform you that you were allowed to remove high heels during the test or you have a health issue that prevents you from being able to take a breath test, that can all be used in your defense. Fighting for you and your future will be an uphill battle. Let a qualified legal representative do it for you. Call us today.


Our legal team has significant experience helping clients through a wide array of legal matters, including those involving criminal law, personal injury law, divorce & separation, and family law. For competent and trustworthy legal counsel, simply contact The Cockrell Law Firm, P.C. today to schedule your free initial consultation with our legal team.