Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
Criminal Defense Attorney Stephen Howard
Call Criminal Defense Attorney in Utah
Call Utah Criminal Lawyer
Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyers / Former Prosecutors
Call 801-449-1409 now to see what our criminal defense team can do for you.
Utah Criminal Defense Lawyer Salt Lake City

Criminal Defense Solutions Start HereSM

Finding a Felony Defense LawyerChoosing a Misdemeanor Defense LawyerDrug and Alcohol Crimes Defense LawyerWhite Collar Defense Attorney for Utah ChargesAttorney for Expungements Reductions and PardonsDefendant Constitutional Rights Criminal LawyerBail and Bond Alternatives in UtahReasons for Hope Facing Criminal Charges

Possession of Alcohol by a Minor - Ogden Defense Attorney

MIP - Utah Criminal Defense Attorney in Ogden

A minor is prohibited under Utah criminal law from possessing or consuming alcohol, or having any measurable concentration of alcohol as determined by a breath, blood, or urine tests. Often called "consumption by a minor," "minor in possession," or "MIP," this criminal charge is a misdemeanor that carries with it severe consequences including substantial fines, losing your driver’s license, and even time in jail.

If you are facing alcohol charges in Ogden or elsewhere in Utah, contact us today to schedule an initial consultation with Utah criminal defense lawyer Stephen Howard.

Adults as “Minors” under Utah Alcohol Laws

MIP Criminal Defense AttorneyA person who reaches the age of 18 is, for most legal purposes, considered an adult. However, Utah law provides an exception to this rule in the context of a criminal charge for the possession or consumption of alcohol. For these purposes of criminal prosecution, a person is still considered a "minor" until the age of 21.

In addition to just "possession" of alcohol, Utah law also makes it a crime for anyone under the age of 21 to purchase, attempt to purchase, or to solicit another person to purchase an alcoholic product. Giving alcohol to a person under the age of 18 can also result in charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Evidence of to Support an MIP Charge

Because our state and federal constitutions both provide for a presumption of innocence, the police must support an MIP allegation with evidence. The evidence can come in the form of an admission by the defendant, testimony from a witness, physical evidence found by police, chemical test results, and more.

Often, police will arrive to investigate after any alcohol has been consumed or removed from the premises. In such circumstances, the police may have to depend on admissions made by those on the scene to prove that a minor had consumed alcohol. In some cases, police will try to administer a blood, breath, or urine test to detect the presence of alcohol or an alcohol metabolite. Without a warrant, the results of such tests may be subject to a motion to suppress.

Any minor suspected of consuming alcohol has important constitutional rights. Under the Fifth amendment you have the right to refuse to answer questions or speak to the police officer about the alleged criminal activity. The Fourth amendment provides you the right to decline chemical testing for alcohol without a warrant. (Please be aware that Utah's implied consent rules provide penalties for individuals suspected of DUI who refuse to take a chemical test for the detection of alcohol.)

MIP and the Suspensions of your Driver’s License in Utah

A conviction for possession of alcohol by a minor can result in a driver license suspension, even if the offense did not involve a vehicle. With a first MIP offense, a minor can complete an alcohol education class which can shorten the length of the driver license suspension. For subsequent MIP convictions, a court may require a sworn affidavit certifying that the defendant has not consumed alcohol for at least one year during the period of the driver license suspension.

Ogden Criminal Defense Lawyer - Alcohol Charges

Stephen Howard has handled thousands of criminal cases in Ogden, Salt Lake, and other cities in Utah. His track record includes serious felony cases such as murder, aggravated robbery, burglary, white collar fraud, and much more. He also handles misdemeanor charges for clients throughout Utah.

If you are facing alcohol charges in Ogden or elsewhere, contact us now to see how we can help you.


Best Rating
Make a Payment to Your Account
Get Help Now
Name: Email: Phone: Describe your legal needs here:
I accept the disclaimer below.
Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is established by the use of this form. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be submitted through this form. By clicking 'submit' I am only requesting that I be contacted for the purpose of obtaining legal services.

This form protected by reCAPTCHA.

  • Selected Victories
  • Criminal Defense AttorneyDismissed - Contractor was charged with theft by deception for allegedly misusing customer funds and failing to complete work that had been agreed upon. A successful motion to quash on legal grounds following the bindover order at preliminary hearing resulted in a complete dismissal of all charges.
  • Criminal Appeals Defense AttorneyDismissed on Appeal - DUI case was dismissed after a successful appeal where the Utah Court of Appeals reversed the trial court's denial of the defense motion to suppress. Without the suppressed evidence, the prosecutor acknowledged that they did not have sufficient evidence to proceed to trial and the case was dismissed.
  • Utah Expungement Attorney Salt Lake Davis Expunged - Client with prior conviction for violent felony was ineligible for expungement through the courts. A successful 2-step reduction restored expungement eligibility and ultimately led to the court's decision to grant the requested expungement.
  • Utah Burglary Attorney Dismissal - Client was charged with first-degree felony home burglary and facing potential life in prison. Defense analysis revealed flaws in prosecutor's case which led to abeyance agreement intended to lead to a full dismissal of the case.
Best Criminal Defense Strategy

Aggressive is good. Effective is better. The best defense strategy in any given criminal case can require in-depth analysis of the facts and a thorough understanding of applicable statutes, case law, and complex procedural and evidentiary rules. Having an experienced attorney on your side....

Strategy »
Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Profile Utah

Our criminal defense lawyers have represented clients facing some of the most serious felony charges on the books in Utah. Whether you are facing prosecution for felony or misdemeanor charges, you can be assured that our attorneys have the experience, knowledge, and determination necessary to help you achieve the results you need. Choosing the best defense attorney for your case will be one of the most important decisions you make....

Experience »
Conviction Consequences - Utah Criminal Defense

A Utah criminal prosecution can result in a lifetime of consequences. Beyond jail and prison, a conviction can affect many areas of life, including employment, housing, finances, family, and much more. Never plead guilty without first consulting with an experienced criminal attorney. Understanding what is at stake is the first step....

Consequences »
Utah Criminal Defense Attorney - Hope

Facing criminal prosecution in Utah can feel like your world is collapsing. But there are reasons to remain hopeful, and there are things you can do right now that can help increase the odds of a successful outcome. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you evaluate the various options you have, and can help you....

Reasons to Hope »
Home | Attorney Profile | Case Results | Criminal Code | FAQ | Legal Resources | Defense Strategy | Contact Us

Serving Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Cache, Tooele, Summit, Box Elder, and Wasatch Counties, and all of Utah.

Attorney Stephen Howard practices as part of the Canyons Law Group, LLC and Stephen W. Howard, PC.

Offices in Salt Lake and Davis Counties
560 South 300 East, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
952 S. Main St., Suite A, Layton, UT 84041

Call now to arrange for a confidential initial consultation with an experienced and effective Utah criminal defense lawyer.

In Salt Lake City, call 801-449-1409.
In Davis County, call 801-923-4345.

Stephen W. Howard, PC

The materials in this website are intended for informational purposes only, and are not legal advice. Viewing or responding to materials in this site does not create an attorney-client relationship. Read Full Disclaimer.