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Michigan OWI Laws and Penalties

Operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated (OWI) in Michigan is against the law. A conviction can result in harsh criminal penalties, such as driver’s license suspension, fines worth thousands of dollars, and even a jail sentence.

There are several types of OWI/DUI charges in Michigan, such as the following:

  • Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) – If you are arrested with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of at least .08 percent, you could be charged with an OWI.
  • Operating with Drugs – If you have any controlled substance or narcotic in your system at the time of your arrest, you will be arrested for an OWI based on drugs.
  • Operating While Visibly Impaired (OWVI) – Based on your appearance and behavior, if an officer believes you are impaired because of how you look, you can be arrested for OWVI. The consequences of an OWVI are less serious than an OWI.
  • Underage OWI – If you are under 21 years of age and arrested with a BAC of at least .02 percent, you could be charged with an underage OWI.

If convicted by an OWI, a judge will determine a sentence based on several factors, such as facts and circumstances of your case, as well as your criminal history. Penalties become more serious if certain aggravating factors are involved, such as high BAC, driving with a child passenger, or causing an injury or death at the time of your arrest.

The following is a breakdown of the OWI penalties found in Section 257.625 of the Michigan Vehicle Code include:

  • First OWI – Punishable by a maximum jail sentence of 93 days, a fine not exceeding $500, driver’s license suspension for at least 180 days, four (4) points on your driver record, and up to 360 hours of community service.
  • Second OWI – Punishable by a jail term of up to one year, a maximum fine of $1,000, driver’s license revocation for at least one (1) year, license confiscation, vehicle immobilization, six points on your driver record, and up to 90 days of community service.
  • Third or Subsequent OWI – Punishable by a maximum jail term of five years, a fine of up to $5,000, driver’s license revocation for a least five (5) years, license confiscation, vehicle immobilization, up to six points on your driver record, and up to 180 days of community service.

Additionally, having a DUI conviction on your criminal record can have a negative impact on your life. You can experience difficulties obtaining employment, applying for college, finding housing, and taking advantage of other opportunities in life.

If you or a loved one has been arrested in Oakland County, look no further than Bloomfield Law Group to help you avoid serious criminal penalties stemming from a DUI charge. Our legal team has the experience and knowledge necessary to protect your rights and freedom from start to finish.

Contact us today at (248) 243-6610 for a free initial consultation. Available 24/7!