The end-of-school is near and graduation parties for high school students are being planned. Many kids will use these events to experiment with alcohol for the first time or they may drink more than usual to celebrate the big event.

Here are a few topics to discuss as you and your graduate make plans to celebrate the big event.

Underage drinking at a party
Underage drinkers face serious consequences if they are caught. They'll likely be arrested and fined, lose their driver's licenses, and risk losing college acceptance and scholarship awards.

Teens trying to buy alcohol with a fake or altered ID may also be charged with forgery and criminal impersonation. Also, anyone underage supplying or assisting another underage person to possess or consume alcohol can be fined or imprisoned.

Running from the police will only make things worse. You might be tempted to flee a party being busted by police, but if you are caught, penalties for any illegal activity will be worse, because you will have evaded police custody.

You might not be able to stop drinking altogether at graduation parties, but you can prepare your child to make better decisions by informing them of the risks involved.

DWI
One night of partying can have lasting effects on your future if you are arrested and convicted of drunk driving. Employers may refuse to hire anyone with a prior conviction. Even if an employer is willing to disregard a past conviction, you may be excluded from certain jobs that involve driving.

A DWI conviction can also limit the types of careers or graduate programs you can pursue. For example, employment that hinges on high ethical standards and/or professional licenses may be more difficult to attain, such as legal jobs, law enforcement positions, or jobs involving children. Further, the conviction can continue to shadow you through life, as you may be required to disclose it on job applications or applications for professional memberships.

Make sure your teen knows there are options if they are ever faced with a peer pressure situation - whether that’s getting in a car with a drunk driver or being offered a drink at a party.

Furnishing Alcohol to Minors
Many parents might be tempted to allow kids to drink at parties but legal drinkers who are caught supplying alcohol to minors face serious criminal liabilities. Even simply allowing them to enter a private party where alcohol is consumed can make parents responsible if they don’t have measures in place to prevent underage attendees from accessing alcohol.

If your child is attending a party reach out to the parents hosting the event to make sure alcohol will not be served to minors.

Know Who to Call in a Legal Emergency
If you or your child have been arrested call Rosenthal & Wadas to setup a complimentary consultation to review your case. There are many complex penalties and rules associated with criminal charges, so always obtain legal advice before making any decisions. We have a lawyer available 24 hours a day to take emergency calls. Rosenthal & Wadas – 972-369-0577.