Disciplinary Sanctions for Alcohol / Drugs

The disciplinary function at Florida State University (FSU) can be triggered after an on-campus or off-campus law violation related to underage possession of alcohol (often called "minor in possession of alcohol"). In a typical case, the student is given a "notice to appear" in court and the law enforcement officer will forward a copy of the notice to FSU. The University will then initiate the disciplinary action. The disciplinary action can occur after any violation of state laws, city ordinances, or University policies.

The procedures used during the disciplinary process are outlined in the Florida State University (FSU) Student Handbook, which gives the University authority to impose sanctions including suspension, dismissal, and expulsion. In some cases, USF will send out a parental notification which is considered to be integral to USF's protocol regarding alcohol use.

Therefore, USF students often face two actions. First, they face a criminal charge in criminal court with criminal penalties. Second, they face a disciplinary action with Florida State Univerity. University of South Florida.

If you are facing sanctions for any alcohol related offense, then contact the experienced criminal defense attorneys in Tallahassee, FL, at Pumphrey Law. Let us put our experience representing students at Florida State University to work for you. Call (850) 681-7777 for a free consultation.


The Criminal Case for Underage Possession of Alcohol

The sanctions imposed in court if a person does not wish to contest the charge vary from courtroom to courtroom. An attorney can help you negotiate the best possible resolution. Diversion is not the best possible resolution. It is better if the charges are dropped completely without any requirement for affirmative action.

The typical penalty for a first offense for the underage possession or consumption of alcohol is a diversion program, $180 fine, 10 hours community work program. The maximum statutory penalty for a first offense is 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.

It is also a crime under Florida law to use a false driver's license ID or allowing someone to use your driver's license for an ID card. The typical punishment is a diversion program, $180 fine, 10 hours community work program. The maximum penalty if the crime is charged as a second degree misdemeanor (because only the date of birth was altered) is 60 days jail and a $500 fine.

The typical penalty for providing alcohol to a person under 21 is a diversion program, $180 fine, 10 hours community work program. The statutory maximum penalty is 60 days jail and a $500 fine.


USF Legal Sanctions for an Alcohol Offenses

As part of the disciplinary action, students may also be required to complete an educational program called SMART (Students Making Alcohol and Other Drug Responsibility Theirs) Choices. The program consists of two two-hour class sessions and an interactive online program at Thagard Student Health Center that presents the legal and personal consequences of substance abuse.

If you are sanctioned by the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities for the misuse or abuse of alcohol, then you might be required to complete this program after an on-campus or off-campus violation of USF's alcohol and drug policy. The purpose of the course called SMART is to help students make better decisions regarding alcohol.


Additional Resources

Students for Sensible Drug Policy Grade for FSU Drug and Alcohol Policy - SSDP has developed a grading rubric for Universities drug and alcohol policies. View FSU's overall grade.

Alcohol Policy at FSU - Visit this link to find Florida State University's Alcohol Policy that describes where and under what circumstances alcohol is permitted on campus.

Unlawful Possession of Alcohol at FSU - Visit the website for Florida State University (FSU) to learn more about its Statement for Students on the Unlawful Possession, Use, or Distribution of Illicit Drugs and Alcohol. Because it is unlawful under Florida law for a person under the age of 21 years old to possess or consume alcoholic beverages, USF has created a policy to prohibit the consumption, distribution, or possession of alcohol on University properties or as part of any University activity. Because it is also unlawful to sell, give, serve, or permit to be served alcoholic beverages to a person under 21 years of age, servers of alcohol to any underaged person can be held civilly liable for damage caused by underage drinkers to whom they provided alcoholic beverages.

FSU University Counseling Center - Provides counseling services for free to students who have paid their fees, and include alcohol and other substance abuse counseling.

FSU Employee Assistance Program (EAP) - The Florida State University was created to help employees with behavioral, medical and substance abuse problems affecting employment. Employees can enter the program through self-referral or supervisory referral. The EAP functions as a coordinator of counseling and other appropriate services available both within the university and the community.


This article was last updated on Wednesday, October 26, 2016.