FT Sessoms

(612) 344-1505

Minnesota DWI & Drunk
Driving Defense Attorney

Why Should I hire F.T. Sessoms as my Minnesota DWI lawyer?
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What should you do if you are stopped for drunk driving in Minnesota?
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What should you do if you are arrested for drunk driving in Minnesota?
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Why have I been charged with a number of offenses?
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When does Miranda apply? Or, "The police did not read me my rights!"
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What is the difference between "DWI" and "DUI"?
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How can I get a limited license or "Work Permit"?
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When am I eligible for a limited license?
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How can I challenge the revocation of my license?
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What are the criminal penalties for "driving while impaired"?
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How do you determine your blood alcohol concentration level?
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Is my vehicle subject to forfeiture?
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Why should I fight my arrest, license revocation and/or forfeiture?
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Should I refuse to submit to chemical testing?
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What is the Status of the Minnesota Intoxilyzer Source Code Litigation?
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If I Have A DWI or Similar Conviction, Am I Eligible to Enter Canada?
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What Are "Aggravating Factors" in a DWI Case?
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What is AWI, SWI, And BWI?
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Why should I hire F.T. Sessoms as my Minnesota DWI lawyer?
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What Happens if I Get A DWI While Driving A Commercial Vehicle:
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What if I am not Driving a Commercial Vehicle but I own a Commercial License and I get arrested for a DWI?
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What Happens if I Drive Under The Influence And Someone Gets Hurt or Killed?
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If I Have Drugs In My System Can I be Charged With DWI?
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How Can I Obtain and Immediate Release From Jail?
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What Is The Difference Between the DWI and The Implied Consent Loss Of My Driver’s License?
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DWI Plate Impoundment or Will I Need to Get Whiskey Plates?
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What Happens If You Are From Another State and Get A DWI in Minnesota?
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What Are the Consequences of A Felony DWI?
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What Is the Minnesota Open Bottle Law?
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What Constitutes the Offense of Underage Drinking & Driving?
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FT Sessoms

What Is the Minnesota Open Bottle Law?

There seems to be a lot of confusion in Minnesota as to what constitutes an open bottle or container that contains alcohol. The open bottle law, according to Minnesota Statute § 169A.35 subd. 1(4) states that possession of an alcoholic beverage or distilled spirits means having actual possession of the bottle or container or consciously having dominion over that bottle or container. The beverage has to contain a certain percentage of malt liquor (3.2%), be an alcoholic beverage, or be a distilled spirit.

Malt Liquor

Minnesota Statute Section 340A.101 subdivision 19 defines the 3.2% malt liquor rule. It means that the beverage is a malt liquor that contains no more than ½ of 1% alcohol by volume (milliliters of alcohol by 100 milliliters of beverage). In other words, the beverage cannot contain more than 3.2% malt liquor. If it does, you can be charged with having an open bottle. If you have been charged with having an open container of an alcoholic beverage containing at least 3.2% malt liquor or any other type of alcoholic beverage, you need to consult with your MN DWI lawyer as soon as possible to address the charges.

Drinking And Consumption

You can be charged if an open container of an alcoholic beverage, 3.2% malt liquor, or distilled spirit is inside a motor vehicle that is also upon a highway or a street. Even being in possession of a bottle with a broken seal while inside a motor vehicle is considered a violation of the Open Bottle Law. If the arresting officer notices the seal is broken and some of the contents are missing, a charge against you can result.

If you are found guilty of consuming the beverage while in a motor vehicle on a roadway or simply having a bottle with a broken seal present in the vehicle, you will be convicted of a misdemeanor. Fortunately, there are ways in which your Minnesota DWI lawyer can challenge the charges against you so that a conviction does not occur or so you can receive a more favorable outcome in your case.

Exceptions

There are exceptions in these cases. According to Statute 169A.35 subdivision 6, passengers in a bus that is operated by a motor carrier of passengers, a commercial vehicle that is operated as a bicycle with five or more passengers providing pedal power, a limousine service, or beverages in the trunk or compartment not occupied by passengers and the driver will not be in violation of the Open Bottle Law. A glove compartment or other compartment that is in the area occupied by the driver and passengers will still result in a charge if the beverages are kept in those areas.

Contact A Minnesota DWI Attorney

If you have been charged with having an open bottle or container containing an alcoholic beverage, it is your right to challenge the charges against you. Minnesota DWI Attorney F.T. Sessoms can help you fight these charges! Call today at 612-344-1505 to learn about your options.