What is drunk driving in Michigan?

In Michigan, there are several different ways you can get in trouble for drunk driving.  Most people believe that if you are caught driving with a blood alcohol level (BAC) of .08 or higher, that you will be charged with drunk driving also known as Operating while Intoxicated.  This is true, but there is much more to the situation.  In Michigan if you are caught driving with a BAC of at least .02 but less than .08 you can still be charged with impaired driving.  This is still a drunk driving charge.  Another charge that people don’t really think about in Michigan is a High BAC charge, which is when a person is operating a motor vehicle with a BAC of .17 or higher.  Its also called Super Drunk Driving in Michigan.  These are all serious charges, but some are more severe than others.

So what is regular drunk driving in Michigan?

Regular drunk driving is when someone operates a motor vehicle with a BAC of at least .08, but less than .17.  This is what many people refer to as DUI or OWI.  In Michigan, its referred to as OWI or Operating While Intoxicated.

What is the possible punishment for OWI in Michigan?

A first offense for OWI in Michigan is a misdemeanor crime with a possible maximum 93-day jail sentence.  Most people don’t go to jail on a first offense if there wasn’t an accident or injury.  This of course will depend in which county you are charged and the judge you are in front of.  Additional possible repercussions include up to 360 hours of community service, 30 day license suspension with 150 days of restricted license, 6 points on your driving record, vehicle immobilization, ignition interlock device, and drivers responsibility fees from Michigan’s Secretary of State.

What are some possible defenses to drunk driving in Michigan?

The defenses will depend on the circumstances, which is why you want an experienced drunk driving attorney reviewing your case.  Possible defenses are that the police didn’t have a good reason to stop your car, that there was no probable cause to arrest you based on the preliminary breath test (PBT) and road side tests, that the police didn’t follow the rules regarding a PBT, among other things that vary based on what happened during the stop.

Can you get my case dismissed?

Maybe,  this is something that will depend on your individual circumstances.  What is important is what you said to the police, the video from the police car, the datamaster results, why they stopped you, witness recollections, the police procedures, your story, the amount of time that passed, among other things.  When I evaluate your case, I make sure to let you know all of your options.  I will not sugarcoat things for you because you need to know the possible outcomes and where the case is going.  It is possible to get a case dismissed or win at trial.

If you’ve been charged with drunk driving, DUI, Operating While Intoxication, OUI, Operating While Visibly Impaired (OWVI), High BAC (Super Drunk Driving) in Washtenaw, Jackson, Lenawee, Livingston, or Wayne Counties, call me for a free consultation.