Drunk Driving Penalties

The drunk driving penalties in Michigan are tough. Don’t face a judge alone and don’t assume that a guilty plea is your only option. Call now if you have been arrested for driving while intoxicated or while drug impaired. There are effective defenses against the consequences of OWI, OWPD and OWVI conviction.

For aggressive defense against drunk driving penalties. Call 248-408-7679 now for a free initial consultation

Drunk driving penalties can be reduced by a judge, or the charges may be dropped, depending upon the strength of the evidence in the case and other legal factors. It may be possible to plea bargain with the prosecutor to reduce the consequences. To determine if there is an effective defense in your case – or if you are seeking legal advice on behalf of a loved one – call my office now.

  • If you are going to seek legal advice, you want to act quickly. The Michigan legislature has mandated that courts decide OWI and OWVI cases within 77 days after a person has been arrested.
  • Remember that most drugged driving consequences (OWPD) are the same as OWI, and they are no different even if you were operating a vehicle while taking prescription drugs.
  • OWVI (Operating While Visibly Impaired) penalties are different and do not require a blood alcohol test; they are based on the observations of the arresting officer.

Mandatory Drunk Driving Penalties For A First OWI Offense

  • License suspension: even if it is your first conviction, you face a six month suspension of your driver’s license. It may be possible to get a restricted license after a person has finished 30 days of a license suspension.
  • Jail or community service: up to 93 days in jail and up to 360 hours of community service
  • Fine: at least $100 and up to $500
  • Points: six points on your driving record
  • Fees: Driver Responsibility Fee of $2000 for OWI ($1000 per year for two years)

High BAC: there are steeper drunk driving penalties for a first conviction with a “high BAC,” which is a blood alcohol concentration of .17 or higher. You stand to lose your driver’s license for a full year. It may be possible to get a restricted license after 45 days but the law requires you to agree to installation of an ignition interlock device (a breathalyzer on the ignition) on any vehicle you would be operating. You may be ordered to participate in alcohol treatment, education classes or in a self-help group. Jail time could be up to 180 days. Fines could reach $700.

Mandatory Drunk Driving Penalties For A Second OWI Offense

  • Jail and community service: if convicted of a second offense within 7 years after the first, you face a minimum of five days in jail and could be sentenced to up to one year in jail, or 30 to 90 days of community service. You could also be sentenced to both.
  • Fine: $200 up to $1000
  • License revocation: a minimum of one year (a minimum of five years if it was revoked within the past seven years)
  • Vehicle immobilization: for 90 to 180 days, or you may have to forfeit your vehicle
  • Points: six
  • Fees: Driver Responsibility Fees of $2000 over two years
  • Rehab: the judge must order you to complete rehab (alcohol or drug treatment), or you may be sentenced to attend a self-help group such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), or another education program.

Felony Drunk Driving Penalties For A Third OWI Offense

A third OWI conviction is a felony in the state of Michigan.

  • Prison time: because it is a felony, incarceration would be in a state prison, for one to five years
  • Fine: $500-$5000
  • Probation
  • Community service: 60 to 180 days
  • License revocation: you could lose it permanently
  • Vehicle immobilization: 1 to 3 years
  • License plate confiscation
  • Forfeiture: you may have to give up your vehicle.
  • Points: six
  • Fees: a Driver Responsibility Fee of $1000 per year for two years

It is also a felony if drunk or drugged driving causes a death or serious injury to someone else. Whether it is your first, second, or third offense, call my office today for a free assessment of what I may be able to do for you.

Call 248-408-7679 now for a defense lawyer. I can come to you, or you can come to my office

Call Attorney Kathryn L. Simmons if you face drunk driving penalties in Lake Orion, Orion Township, Rochester Hills, Oxford, Clarkston, Auburn Hills, Waterford, Pontiac, Bloomfield Hills, Troy, Macomb County and the Oakland County Circuit Court. No attorney or law firm can guarantee the outcome of your case. However, I can provide you with a free evaluation of the details of your case, and suggest a strategy to pursue the best possible outcome.