States that Allow Underage Drinking and Other Interesting Alcohol Laws
Underage Consumption of Alcohol
On July 17th, 1984, Congress passed the National Minimum Drinking Age Act, which required all states to make 21 the minimum age to buy and possess alcohol. However, this act did not prohibit consumption of alcohol by minors. After the dust settled, some states extended the act to prohibit underage consumption of alcohol, but some didn’t. The states that didn’t prohibit underage drinking honor exceptions to the Act. Said exceptions allow minors (under 21) to drink alcohol. Below are the exceptions, and the states that honor them; Source.
- Family exemptions: (1) Consumption with parental/guardian consent and/or parental/guardian presence. And (2) Married minors; which allows consumption when the minor’s spouse is present and/or consents. Some States specify that the spouse must be of legal age, while others do not.
- Location exemption: Allows minors to drink when on private property. States vary in their definition of private property; which may extend to all private locations, private residences only, or in the home of a parent or guardian only.
States that Allow Open Containers
The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century of 1998 was passed by Congress to give incentives for states to prohibit open containers of alcohol in motor vehicles. Most states have adopted this federal law, but several have not. Source.
Other Interesting State Alcohol Laws
- In Montgomery County, Maryland, dancing is prohibited in places that dispense alcohol. Source.
- In Pennsylvania, its legal for a minor to operate a watercraft under the influence of alcohol if his or her BAC is less than 0.02%. Source.
- Nevada state law renders public intoxication legal, and explicitly prohibits any local or state law from making it a public offense. Source.
- In Indiana, The sale of cold beer is prohibited. Source.
- In Indiana, “It is unlawful for a permittee to sell an alcoholic beverage for anything other than cash.” Source.
- In Indiana, “It is unlawful for a permittee to sell, barter, exchange, give, provide, or furnish an alcoholic beverage to a person whom he knows to be a habitual drunkard.” Source.
- In Indiana, It is illegal to sell alcohol to inmates. Source.
- In Alabama, Liquor can be served 24 hours a day unless restricted by local ordinances. Source.
- Florida prohibits the sale, possession, or consumption of any liquor or spirit of greater than 153 proof. Source.
- Indiana and Idaho prohibit the sale of alcohol on Christmas, New Year’s Day, or Election Days prior to polls closing. Source 1 and Source 2.
- Massachusetts does not allow “Happy Hours” or other limited time discounts on alcoholic beverages. And only 2 drinks can be sold to an individual at any one time for on-premises consumption. Source.
- In Rhode Island, it is prohibited to sell two drinks for the price of one, and allowing patrons to have more than two unconsumed drinks at anytime. Source.
- In Ohio, you can take home an unfinished bottle of wine from a restaurant. Source.