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Grand Rapids MI Drunk Driving Offense

What Are The Penalties For A OWI Drunk Driving Offense?

The penalties for drunk driving offenses in Michigan can be extremely severe. Referred to in Michigan as operating while intoxicated (OWI) and sometimes called DUI or DWI offenses, a conviction for a first OWI can result in serious consequences, including fines, jail time and license suspension with penalties for subsequent offenses becoming increasingly severe.

If you are facing charges for any type of alcohol-related offense, it is important that you have an experienced Grand Rapids drunk driving defense lawyer on your side from the start. At the law office of Jason L. Jansma, PLC, we represent clients throughout western Michigan in a wide variety of OWI, DWI and DUI defense matters. The information on this page is intended to help you understand the basic penalties that you may be facing, depending on the type of charge you are facing.

Michigan First Offense OWI

The blood alcohol limit in Michigan is .08 percent. If the breath test indicates that your blood alcohol content is higher than .08 percent, you are intoxicated according to the law.

Penalties for a first offense can include:

  • Possible jail time not to exceed 93 days
  • License suspension of up to six months (restricted license eligibility after 30 days)
  • A fine of not less than $100 and not more than $500
  • Driver responsibility fees of $1000 for two years
  • Up to 15 days of community service
  • Ignition interlock device
  • Vehicle immobilization

Michigan Second Offense OWI

Second offenses carry many of the same penalties as the first offense but some of them are more severe.

Penalties for a second offense can include:

  • Mandatory jail time of at least five days and not more than one year
  • License revocation of at least one year
  • License plate confiscation
  • Vehicle immobilization or forfeiture of up to six months
  • A fine of not less than $200 and not more than $1000
  • Driver responsibility fees of $1000 for two years
  • Ignition interlock device
  • Up to 90 days of community service
  • One year of alcohol rehabilitation

Michigan Third Offense OWI

A third or subsequent OWI conviction is a felony offense in Michigan. Penalties for felony offenses are extremely severe.

Penalties for a felony OWI offense can include:

  • Mandatory jail time of at least 30 days
  • Possible prison time of up to five years
  • License suspension of at least one year
  • Possible permanent license revocation
  • License plate confiscation
  • Vehicle immobilization or forfeiture of up to six months
  • A fine of not less than $200 and not more than $1000
  • Driver responsibility fees of $1000 for two years
  • Ignition interlock device
  • Up to 180 days of community service
  • One year of alcohol rehabilitation

Michigan's "Super Drunk" Law

This law went into effect on October 31, 2010. "Super drunk" is defined as having a blood alcohol level of .17 percent or higher. A conviction on these types of charges can result in enhanced penalties for first-time offenders. All of the other first-time offender penalties apply. All of the second and subsequent conviction penalties remain unchanged as they are more severe than the enhanced penalties outlined below.

Some of the enhanced penalties for a first-time "super drunk" conviction can include:

  • Possible jail time not to exceed 180 days
  • License suspension of one year, including 45 days "hard suspension"
  • Restricted driving privileges possible if you pay for an ignition interlock device
  • A fine of not less than $200 and not more than $700
  • One year of alcohol rehabilitation

Call for a Free Initial Consultation

Contact our office today to learn more about our OWI defense services. Attorney Jansma is available during regular business hours and by appointment evenings and weekends. You can reach us by phone at 616-581-7406 (Free Office Consultation), toll free at 877-378-5541 or via e-mail. We accept all major credit cards. Flat fees are charged for some services.

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Jason L. Jansma PLC
40 Pearl Street
Suite 922

Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Phone: 616-581-7406 (Free Office Consultation)
Toll Free: 877-378-5541
Fax: 616-233-9166
Grand Rapids Law Office

Jason L. Jansma PLC
1300 W Centre Ave
Portage, MI 49024

Phone: 616-581-7406 (Free Office Consultation)
Toll Free: 877-378-5541
Fax: 616-233-9166
Portage Law Office