Public Intoxication Lawyer, Austin

Austin's Open Container Laws


What if my Passenger has an Open Container?

Can I be arrested for Possession Of Alcoholic Beverage In Motor Vehicle if I have an open beer can in my car? What if it's my passneger's open container? What does it mean to have Possession Of Alcoholic Beverage In Motor Vehicle? Are there areas of my car where I am allowed to carry open alcoholic containers?

Answer:

Any person possessing an open container in a car, even a passenger, can be charged with Possession of an Alcoholic Beverage in a Motor Vehicle.

Possession of an Alcoholic Beverage in a Motor Vehicle, or Open Container, makes it illegal for a person to knowingly possesses an open container in a passenger area of a motor vehicle that is located on a public highway, regardless of whether the vehicle is being operated or is stopped or parked. An arrest is possible where a person has an open can of beer, bottle of wine, or bottle of liquor in the passenger compartment, meaning the main seating area of a car.

Areas such as a glove compartment or similar storage container that is locked; the trunk of a vehicle; or the area behind the last upright seat of the vehicle, if the vehicle does not have a trunk are expempted from the Open Container law, meaning that an open container in those areas are legal.



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