Nampa, ID asked in Consumer Law and Criminal Law for Idaho

Q: Is it illegal for a 19 year old to drink nonalcoholic beers or drinks?

I live in Nampa, Idaho and I know that some nonalcoholic drinks are treated the same as alcoholic drinks, so if someone is not able to prove they're 21 and older then they'll be refused of service. So my main question is, is it illegal for a young adult below the legal drinking age to consume nonalcoholic drinks?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kevin M Rogers
Kevin M Rogers
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Boise, ID
  • Licensed in Idaho

A: Of course. If you substitute the words "non-alcoholic beverages" for "water," the answer would make more sense. Idaho law prohibits those under twenty-one (21) from consuming alcohol. So, what I think you might be talking about is if you were stopped by police or they happened upon you and smelled beer on your breath? If this happens, they (police) obviously have the right to make sure the law is being followed and would have the right to ask your age and ask for your ID. When you tell them that it's non-alcoholic, they may not believe you and it would behoove you to get a receipt from the bar, so that you won't have your time wasted by being held up by police questioning or worse, in a car, taken down and asked to "blow!" Because, I don't know too many individuals who can pass the FST's (Field sobriety tests), perfectly sober. The reason is, the tests are very difficult to pass, and it is subjective (up to the person giving the test whether you pass or fail) and most of the tests call it a "flunk" when you score only 1 or 2 points. So, don't get into a situation where you could possibly be taken downtown to blow because, even if you blow ZERO's, a really determined, cop can still charge you with DUI, by showing video or witnesses who saw you driving in an apparently "impaired manner!" Even though you blow zeros, you're not out of the woods, so make sure you turn into the nearest lane, signal a full five (5) seconds IN YOUR LANE before beginning to change lanes, and don't speed or have your windows down and your stereo blasting! These are "life hacks," that will keep your license in your wallet!

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