Serving any kind of alcoholic drinks to minors is considered a crime under Florida law. This crime will apply to even private citizens too for buying or offering alcohol to an underage drinker.
If anyone knowingly or unknowingly try to sell or serve alcohol to minors may face serious consequences as per the law in Florida. Florida police regularly arrests people for selling or offering alcohol to minors after conducting compliance check.
During compliance check, a police officer will inspect local alcohol vendors to make sure that they are fully complying with Florida rules on selling or serving alcohol to a minor or adults.
Police will normally do this by using any teen recruit, who will approach a clerk, bartender, waiter or any other type of vendor and ask for drink.
Suppose the clerk fail to ask for identification and sell the alcohol in spite of knowing that the customer is of teen’s age, or they accept bribe, then they may face serious legal problem.
Therefore, while exploring how to open a liquor store, it is important that you must acquaint yourself with all rules of serving alcohol.
Consequences of selling minors or an adult below 21 alcohol
At whatever point if someone is caught with serving or selling any alcoholic beverage to minor or even underage customer, then they may be facing charges of mis-demeanor. A first-time offender for selling alcohol in Florida to any minor could yield second degree charge of mis-demeanor.
Punishment for serving alcohol to minors may include jail for 60 days and also fine as high as $500.
Also, it is likely that the offender may face penalties from “Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles” too. If someone is convicted for giving alcohol to any minor may face suspension of his driver’s license.
Much harsher punishment for employers serving alcohol to minors
Punishment may differ if a minor is working as an employee of any establishment who serves alcoholic beverages. In case someone uses this underage worker for serving alcohol, then the employer may face first degree mis-demeanor charges.
Punishment may include maximum 1 year in jail and fine up to $1,000.
Are you charged for providing alcohol to any underage drinkers?
If you are facing this kind of charges then you need to learn how to defend yourself.
Those who face first or second-degree charges of mis-demeanor by selling alcohol to any minor in Florida, then your reputation, driving privileges, and also your livelihood may be in jeopardy. However, there can be possible defenses against this charge.
- Your attorney may defend your case by proving that the minor has used fake ID and convinced the clerk that they were grown up to purchase alcohol.
- Also, mistaking the minor as being older by looking at their appearance, which is a mistake that any of the “prudent person” can also make.
You may learn more about the possible defenses by having free consultation with an experienced attorney for criminal defense.
Also, keep in mind that law and amount of fine may be quite different in each of the state or jurisdiction.