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Georgia’s open container law: Know before you go

On Behalf of | Mar 27, 2024 | DUI |

Georgia, like most states, does not tolerate driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs. That means motorists found to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher are legally impaired and subject to arrest.

Everyone knows that driving under the influence can lead to arrest and possible conviction for DUI, but what do you know about the state’s open alcohol container law? Refresh your understanding of the law to avoid unnecessary legal problems.

What can get you an open container citation?

Under Georgia law, possessing an open container of alcohol or consuming alcoholic beverages is prohibited in any motor vehicle. The car need not be moving to face an open container charge. In other words, you could get a citation even if parked on the shoulder of a road.

Other facts to know:

  • You can be charged even if you are not holding the open container as long as it’s easily accessible.
  • If the vehicle with the container has no occupants, you could still be cited if you own the car.
  • Penalties include a $200 fine and points on your license

Refusing a breathalyzer during the incident may compromise your driving privileges.

An open container citation often accompanies a DUI charge

The incident could lead to a DUI arrest and additional points, substantially worsening your situation. Accumulating 15 points or more within two years can lead to license suspension and other harsh consequences. Further, any DUI offense, including an open container violation, can cause a rise in your car insurance premiums.

If you’re facing any alcohol-related charges, having legal guidance is crucial. Potential defenses for DUI range from challenging the legality of the traffic stop to contesting the accuracy of sobriety tests. Representation can also aid in challenging an open container citation to protect your driving record