Arizona Alcohol Laws
Where to Buy Alcohol
Retail stores and groceries sell beer, wine, and spirits except between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. and not on Sunday between 2 a.m. and 10 a.m. Bars and restaurants stop serving alcohol at 2 a.m.
Legal Age for Drinking/Serving Alcohol
Arizona ’s legal drinking age is 21, and servers in restaurants and bartenders must be 19. Retail workers (other than in package stores) may handle unopened alcoholic beverages at age 16 if a supervisor over the age of 19 is present.
Open Container Laws
No one in a vehicle can be in possession of an open container of alcohol. Bottles that have been opened should be stored in the car’s trunk.
The maximum blood-alcohol content (BAC) allowable by law for drivers is .08 percent. Over that limit, drivers are considered ‘per se intoxicated’ and can be convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) based on that fact alone.
Harsher penalties are available to the courts if a driver is determined to have a BAC that is .15 percent over the legal limit of .08 percentl.
Under ‘zero tolerance laws,’ operating a vehicle with any blood-alcohol content if the driver is under the age of 21 invokes DUI penalties.
‘Implied consent laws’ go into effect when a driver signs for a driver’s license. These require drivers to submit to breath, blood, or urine testing for intoxication if requested. Refusing to cooperate could invoke mandatory suspension of the driver’s license for up to a year.
A driver’s license can be revoked or suspended by the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) if a driver refuses to submit to chemical testing for intoxication or if the driver is above the maximum allowable BAC of .08 percent. In Arizona, for the first DUI offense the mandatory suspension is 90 days; for the second offense, 90 days; for the third offense, 90 days.
In Arizona, it is a penalty option for the court’s to confiscate a driver’s vehicle or attach an ignition interlock device if the driver has three DUI convictions. Mandatory attendance at an a lcohol education and prevention program, treatment for alcohol abuse, and assessment of a person for possible alcohol or drug dependency can be required.
DUI is a felony only when aggravated.