What penalties could your child face for a drug conviction?

There are likely few things more important to you as a parent than ensuring your child is happy and healthy, and a crucial part of that is helping your kid create a bright future.

You may worry that the repercussions of a drug charge will keep your child from reaching his or her full potential. Here is what you need to about the drug penalties for minors in North Carolina.

Minors under 16

The juvenile court system will typically handle crimes by minors who are 15 years old or younger. The courts will usually focus on rehabilitation over incarceration.

If your child is under the age of 16, common penalties for drug crimes include probation and juvenile detention. Probation typically lasts at least six months, during which the minor must meet certain requirements, such as participating in a drug counseling program, performing community service, attending school and meeting with a probation officer. First-time offenders may have their charges dismissed after the completion of their probation.

Repeat or egregious offenders may face detention in a juvenile hall or juvenile home.

Minors over 16

If your child is 16 or older, the consequences of drug crimes are more serious. In these cases, offenders are usually charged as adults. The penalties will vary based on the exact charges, which include simple possession, possession with intent to sell, possession of paraphernalia and trafficking.

Regardless of your child’s age, a drug conviction can have serious implications, but a strong drug possession defense attorney can help mitigate the repercussions.