Because of the many holidays associated with the month of December, it’s perhaps one of the months in which we celebrate the most with family and friends. For some, this means quiet get-togethers with family and friends. For others, it means big gatherings in which alcohol will be served.

However you choose to celebrate this holiday season, please remember that the decision to drink and drive is never advised. Not only is it against the law, you may encounter serve consequences because of your choices – consequences that may not just affect your life, but the lives of others as well.

The consequences you face

In Minnesota, driving while impaired carries serious consequences for you, depending on the circumstances of your situation, such as your blood-alcohol concentration, prior convictions or offenses, and the presence of a child in the vehicle. A person may face anything from a misdemeanor charge, which is punishable by up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine all the way up to first-degree felony DWI, which is punishable by up to seven years in prison and the possibility of a $14,000 fine.

A DWI also stays on your record, affecting other things like future drunk driving charges, employment and access to affordable housing.

The consequences others face

As we said above, your life may not be the only life affected by your decision to drink and drive this holiday season. If you were to strike a pedestrian or get involved in a serious accident, the other individual could get injured and require extensive medical treatment you could be held liable for. If the accident were fatal, you might also face a civil lawsuit that would hold you accountable for the individual’s death.

If you value your rights and want to avoid an outcome like this, then don’t make the mistake to drink and drive. Remember though, if you do make this mistake, you can obtain the services of a skilled attorney.

Sources:, “An Overview of Minnesota’s DWI Laws,” Jim Cleary and Rebecca Pirius, November 2008, Accessed Dec. 7, 2015

The Office of the Revisor of State, “2015 Minnesota Statutes, 169A.20 Driving While Impaired,” Accessed Dec. 7, 2015

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