You got arrested for drunk driving for the very first time. We get it. It’s terrifying! You were in handcuffs, for goodness sake! It made you feel like a criminal. And on top of that, you spent what felt like ages in a cell, which you’ve never had to do before! All in all, it was a dreadful night. One you hope never to repeat. But swearing off alcohol doesn’t solve the issue you have ahead of you – a DUI charge. So what happens now? Let’s talk about a first arrest for drunk driving in Michigan.
Part of the struggle that first time DUIers face, is figuring out what happens next. People who’ve been arrested one or more times before are familiar with the process. But if this was your first time, you’re probably scared and confused. Don’t waste time worrying though – we’re here for you. So let’s start by taking a look at what you’re dealing with….
Operating While Visibly Impaired (OWVI)
This charge is considered to be one of the least serious of all the DUI charges you could get. Commonly called impaired driving, it generally means a BAC of less than .08%. However that doesn’t mean you’re going to get off with a slap on the wrist! Michigan takes all drunk driving charges very seriously. Our drunk driving defense team will be looking at all the angles to keep you from getting convicted. But, if you’re convicted, here’s what you’re up against…
- Your license is going to be restricted for 90 days
- You will be required to pay a fine of up to $300
- Your vehicle may be immobilized
- You will have 4 points added to your driving record
- You will be required to pay a $500 driver responsibility fee (which might be changing)
- You will either: 1) Go to jail for up to 93 days, or
2) Serve up to 360 hours of community service
Operating While Intoxicated (OWI)
This is a very common charge, and is more serious than an OWVI charge. It means that your were driving while your blood alcohol count (called your BAC) was over the legal limit of .08, but below .17. If you’re convicted of operating while intoxicated in Michigan, you’re facing..
- Your driver’s license will be suspended for 30 days, which will be followed by a 150 day period of license restrictions
- You will have to pay a fine of up to $500
- Your vehicle may be immobilized
- You may have to spend up to 93 days in jail
- You may have to serve up to 360 hours of community service
- You may be required to have an ignition interlock devices installed on your car
- You will get six points added to your license
- You will have to pay a driver responsibility fee of $1,000 (which might be changing)
‘Super Drunk’ OWI (High BAC)
This charge is used when a drunk driver’s BAC is over .17, which is nearly twice the legal limit for driving in Michigan.This is considered to be the most serious of the first time DUI charges, and the one that comes with the harshest penalties. So if your first ever DUI conviction just happens to be ‘super drunk,’ this is what you can expect…
- Your driver’s license will be suspended for 1 year, but you may be eligible for a restricted license after 45 days of suspension if you have an ignition interlock device installed on every car you own, or plan to use.
- You will have to pay a fine of up to $700
- You may have to spend up to 180 days in jail
- You may also have to perform up to 360 hours of community service
- Six points will be added to your license
- You will have to pay a driver responsibility fee of $1,000 (however, this could be changing)
As you can see, even a first time DUI charge for someone with no prior criminal record and no history of drunk driving, is very harsh! Michigan treats drunk driving as a very serious crime, and punishes anyone convicted of a DUI with severe penalties. The best way to avoid dealing with this is to not drink and drive.
However, everyone makes mistakes and we understand that sometimes circumstances lead to poor choices that even the most law-abiding citizen can make! Don’t lose hope. Our drunk driving defense attorneys have helped thousands of client over the decades. We understand Michigan’s law inside and out. Let’s talk about your options quickly.
If you or a loved one have been accused of drunk driving in Michigan, there is only one thing you should do now – call The Kronzek Firm immediately! Our skilled drunk driving defense attorneys have spent decades defending the people of MIchigan against drunk driving charges , and have earned many favorable results for our clients. Call us at 866 766 5245 now. We are available 24/7 to help you pick up the pieces and get your life back on track.