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Open Container Law Exceptions

04th April 2011
By joanne in Law
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Most states in the U.S. have open container laws that prohibit motorists from maintaining opened containers of alcohol in the passenger area of a vehicle. Any opened alcoholic beverage or unsealed bottle is considered an open container and must be kept out of achieve of the driver. Typically, for a motorist to be in compliance with the law, the alcohol should be locked in the glove compartment, trunk, or other locked region that can make the alcohol inaccessible to the driver. If you are pulled more than and identified to be in violation of these laws, the driver and probably the passenger can be ticketed or arrested, dependent on the specifics of the law in your state.

Federal Strain Against Open Containers

The prohibition of opened containers of alcohol in a vehicle is not a federal law. These laws are left up to the states, although the federal authorities has devised laws to put pressures on states to develop open container laws. The federal governmentgives funding to states for highway construction, and if states fall short to stick to the federal government's suggestion to generate these laws, some of their funding is diverted to a highway safety method as a substitute.

This stress has been successful in getting most states to create and enforce open container laws, even though some states, this sort of as Mississippi, Arkansas, Missouri, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware, and Connecticut do not have open container laws. In fact, in Mississippi, it is actually legal to drink whilst driving, as prolonged as the driver stays under the legal BAC limit of .08. In the other states listed previously mentioned, passengers are permitted to drink in a shifting motor vehicle, but not the driver.

Universal Exceptions

In addition to the variations amongst states, there are some universal exceptions to laws versus open alcohol containers in a motor vehicle. Passengers of mass transit cars or vehicles that specialize in the commercial transportation of individuals, this kind of as taxis, buses, and limousines, are not limited by open container laws. Passengers of these automobiles may possibly carry and transport open containers of alcohol. Also, occupants of motor households may possibly have open containers of alcohol in the living areas of the motor house.

Regional police sometimes get open container laws puzzled and may possibly try out to ticket or arrest a passenger of a bus, taxi, or limo for obtaining an open container. If this has transpired to you, you have been wrongly ticketed or arrested and should consider contesting the charge. If you make a decision to not contest it, you chance getting to shell out a high priced good and also quite possibly acquiring a misdemeanor additional to your criminal report. Think about contacting a DUI defense lawyer instantly to help you appropriately contest the cost.

For A lot more Details

To find out a lot more about open container laws and exceptions to the law in your state, please pay a visit to the site of seasoned Rhode Island DUI defense lawyer James Powderly nowadays.

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