Can you be charged with a crime for paying for a drink for someone who is underage in a bar, if you didn’t know their age?

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Can you be charged with a crime for paying for a drink for someone who is underage in a bar, if you didn’t know their age?

Asked on June 5, 2012 under Criminal Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Yes. It is essentially providing a minor with alcohol and in most states it is a strict liability crime, which means that you did not have to intend to do it, it simply happened. If you have been charged, contact a criminal defense attorney  immediately to see if the charges can be dropped or if you can sue the owners of the bar since this person probably should not have been in there in the first place.


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