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What are open container laws?

Posted on June 29, 2016

There are times when everyone of legal age takes home beer or alcohol in their vehicles. There are times when you may carry alcohol home from the store. These actions aren’t crimes, but they can quickly get you in trouble if the containers are open. Open container laws are specifically designed to stop individuals from drinking in public, so if you do, you could be breaking the law.

What are open container laws?

Open container laws are laws that restrict where you can drink alcohol in public. Depending on your area’s specific laws, a public area may include school property, mobile homes, residential neighborhoods, parking lots, in the common hallways of your apartment building or on a public sidewalk.

Can you be arrested or charged for drunk driving if you violate an open container law?

You can be charged with an open container law violation, and you may also be charged with a DUI if you were parked or driving with the open containers in your vehicle at the time of the stop. Depending on the situation, you could be accused of several crimes, but it depends on what you’re doing, where you are, if your car is on or off and several other factors.

Can you contest an open container law citation?

You can contest any citation you receive including an open container law citation. When you talk to your attorney, he or she will work with you to find out if you or your loved ones actually violated a law based on the facts of your case, if your conduct constituted a criminal violation and if the arresting officer followed the law.

Source: FindLaw, “Open Container Law,” accessed June 29, 2016

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