Mathis, Bates & Klinghard PLLC
A Family Law Firm - Clarkville, TN
Call Today For A Free Consultation 931-444-3153
click here to call now 931-444-3153

A More Progressive Approach to Legal Representation

General Assembly to vote on rescinding newly passed underage DUI law

On Monday, the Tennessee General Assembly convened in Nashville for the start of a special session called by Governor Bill Haslam, marking the second time in the past two years, and the 59th time in the history of state, that such an action has been undertaken

Interestingly enough, state lawmakers haven't gathered for something as simple as passing a revised budget bill. Rather, they're holding a special session to address several unusual issues, including rescinding an underage DUI law that it just passed during the 2016 regular session.

The law, sponsored by Rep. William Lamberth (R-Gallatin), sought to introduce greater uniformity in the state's drunk driving laws by enhancing the punishment for those adults caught drunk driving while under the legal drinking age.

Specifically, the law provided that intoxicated drivers between 18 to 20 years of age would face the same penalties as intoxicated drivers age 21 and older, including a minimum of 48 hours in jail, one year of probation, an inability to expunge a conviction and increasingly harsh penalties for repeat offenses.

When passing the law, however, the General Assembly ended up inadvertently eliminating a provision, which resulted in the maximum allowable blood alcohol content for underage intoxicated drivers rising from .02 percent to .08 percent.

Shortly thereafter, state officials were informed by the federal government that an applicable zero tolerance law mandated that the 50 states must set the blood alcohol limit for underage drivers at .02, and that if Tennessee did not rectify this by October 1, it would forfeit $60 million in federal highway funds.

Given the vital need for these funds, it's expected that during the special session, state lawmakers will essentially revoke the underage drinking law they just passed, such that that intoxicated drivers between 18 to 20 years of age will once again be subject to the .02 blood alcohol limit and more lenient penalties, including a $250 fine and the ability to expunge a conviction.

Stay tuned for any updates …            

Regardless of your age, if you've been charged with DUI, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible to ensure the protection of your rights, your freedom and your future.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
email us nowemail us now

Contact Us For A Free Consultation

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Mathis, Bates & Klinghard PLLC
412 Franklin Street
Clarksville, TN 37040

Phone: 931-444-3153
Fax: 931-278-6642
Clarksville Law Office Map

Review Us