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Arizona Open Container Laws: The Dangerous Path to DUI

Understanding Arizona Open Container Laws

Alcohol is a substance that is considered as a potential hazard. When not abused, alcohol can help with relaxation, socialization, and celebration. It does not become dangerous until someone chooses to do something truly foolish after drinking it, such as driving a car. Many states, including Arizona, have open container laws that are available to deter drunk driving by inflicting strict penalties when someone gets arrested after drinking and driving.

The laws that attempt to prevent drunk driving do not only include after-the-fact penalties. Many states also have laws restricting the purchase of alcohol after being already intoxicated, laws that prohibit underage drinking, and laws that impose a penalty for even having open containers outside on a sidewalk or in a car.

The injury attorneys at Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm in Phoenix have significant experience in helping clients who have been victims of DUI accidents, including those involving Arizona Open Container Laws. If you need help filing a claim for one of these awful, life-changing accidents, we are here to help you get the compensation you deserve. Our offices are conveniently located in ChandlerPeoria, and North Phoenix, and we can meet in person or over the phone, or via video call.  You can contact us for a free consultation, or read on to find out more.

By the way, we will also help with other problems that have cost you sleep, like getting a rental car very soon and finding a nearby doctor or psychiatrist who can help get your life back on track. Even the best legal team isn’t good enough if your quality of life isn’t sustainable while justice and compensation are on the way. The whole point of legal action is to regain quality of life, so we help you long-term as attorneys and short-term as your go-to people. Our familiarity with the local Phoenix courts and Arizona Open Container Laws makes us confident that we can help you get the best settlement possible.

If you are unsure whether or not you can afford an attorney, don’t worry. We only get paid when you settle. Check out our Attorney Fees Calculator to find out more.

Open Containers in Arizona

Arizona law prohibits anyone from consuming or possessing an open container of alcohol inside motor vehicles. The law not only applies to drivers but also applies to open containers in the possession of passengers in motor vehicles. The passenger compartment for purposes of this law includes unlocked compartments inside the vehicle. It does not extend to the trunk or the area behind the back seats. Essentially, the law is available to prohibit open containers of alcohol anywhere inside a vehicle that may be within reach of the driver.

In many states, open containers can even include an empty bottle or can that once held alcohol so long as some alcohol remains in the container. A violation does not extend to the smell of alcohol. But even an empty bottle may be sufficient for a police officer to conduct a DUI investigation. As Arizona has some of the strictest DUI laws in the country, an Arizona Open Container Laws violation may have consequences beyond the class-2 misdemeanor for that charge alone. Once a police officer is conducting a DUI investigation, he or she merely needs sufficient evidence of the driver being impaired to the slightest degree to charge him or her with a DUI.

In the News

What makes laws such as Arizona Open Container Laws so effective is that it is enforced against all drivers, regardless of their station. As one legislator recently learned, an open container violation is not waived because of the notoriety of the driver. According to police statements, Representative Albert Hale got charged with having an open container of alcohol in his vehicle. The fact that this law was against Representative Hale will hopefully warn him that drinking and driving are not possible on Arizona roadways. Given that he had previously been pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving, this citation should help Representative Hale realize the dangers behind choosing to drive after drinking alcohol.

Get Help Now

At Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm near you, we have more than 15 years of experience helping clients obtain compensation for their injuries from DUI accidents in the Phoenix area, including those involving Arizona Open Container Laws. When you’re ready to talk, please contact our office to arrange a free initial consultation by phone or at our Chandler office, conveniently located near you.

If you have been in a DUI accident, contact Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm in nearby Chandler, AZ to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. We provide personal injury legal services to clients in your area including ChandlerGilbertMesaScottsdale, Tempe, and Peoria.

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Brenden Lewis
a month ago

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a month ago

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My dad was in a car accident and during those difficult moments, Phoenix Accident and Injury Law firm has been there for us. They care for their clients, will walk you through everything you need to know step by step, they follow up, very easy to reach and fast to respond. And one thing is for sure! they will fight for you! we felt safe with them! Me and the entire family thank them all so much for all their help! These people that works here are amazing!

Jenifer henke
a year ago

I was in an accident that resulted in getting whiplash and a concussion. I contacted Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm that day. Everyone was helpful (Rhea, Karissa, and Jeff) from the very beginning to the very end. They sent me to a physical therapy location that was pretty far away but the doctor and physical therapist were very kind so I did make the trek. They handled all aspects of my case in a timely manner and answered all my questions. They got the max amount possible, and from that, paid the medical bills and took their fair cut. I would not hesitate to recommend them to family or friends.

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Fernando Lopez
a year ago

My experience with this team was superb, as they were ongoing with the case and making sure that the client gets what they deserve. I recommend anyone looking for a accident law group that this is the team you want to be representing you!!

Kimberly Legaspi
2 years ago

What can I say about the Thompson Law Firm? They are AMAZING!! It’s never fun when you need an accident lawyer because you are pretty much in a bad place. Shane and the staff have been wonderful, kept me informed at every step of this process. I would recommend Thompson Law Firm to anyone, in fact, I have referred several friends already!! Thank you Thompson Law Firm for everything you did for me!!!

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2 years ago

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2 years ago

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Karissa Murphy
2 years ago

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