Michigan DUI Attorney Serving Clients in Birmingham
Michigan takes driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) very seriously, and a person who is suspected of drinking and driving can face operating while intoxicated (OWI) charges in the state. When you are charged with DUI/OWI in Birmingham, Michigan, not only can you face the suspension or revocation of your driver’s license, but you can also face significant financial penalties and, in some cases, even jail time. You do not want to face charges for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated on your own. You should reach out to an aggressive Birmingham DUI defense attorney who can get started on your case today.
At the law office of Paul J. Tafelski, we provide tailored and personalized representation to each of our clients.
What is a DUI in Birmingham, MI?
What is a DUI or OWI under Michigan law? Under MCL 257.625, operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated is defined as any of the following situations:
- Person is under the influence of alcohol, a controlled substance, another intoxicating substance, or a combination of those substances;
- Person has a blood alcohol content of 0.08 grams or more; or
- Person has a blood alcohol content of 0.17 grams or more.
Under the law, it is illegal for the owner of a motor vehicle, or the person in charge of a motor vehicle, to “authorize or knowingly permit the vehicle to be operated upon a highway or other place open to the public or generally accessible to motor vehicles” if the driver is under the influence of alcohol or another illegal substance. This includes a situation in which the person does not clearly have a blood alcohol concentration at or above the legal limit, but rather the “person’s ability to operate the motor vehicle is visibly impaired” due to alcohol consumption or the consumption of another substance.
OWI Charges in Birmingham and High BAC Offenses
The question of penalties for an OWI conviction depends in part on the person’s blood alcohol content at the time of the arrest. Michigan has what are known as “High BAC Offenses,” which are OWI offenses that occur when the individual has a blood alcohol content of 0.17 grams or more. When the person’s blood alcohol content is below 0.17 grams (but still at 0.08 grams or higher), then that individual does not typically face charges for a High BAC Offense but still can be convicted of an OWI.
It is also important to remember that OWIs can involve driving under the influence of illegal drugs or other substances. As such, you can be convicted of an OWI without having a specific blood alcohol content.
Penalties for a Birmingham, MI DUI
If you are convicted of an OWI/DUI in Michigan, what penalties can you face? Generally speaking, first-time offenders and subsequent offenders receive different penalties:
- First offense: fine of up to $500, up to 93 days in jail, up to 360 community service hours, and suspension of driver’s license for 30 days;
- Second and subsequent offenses: fine of up to $1,000, up to one year in jail, driver’s license revoked for at least one year (and at least five years if there was a prior driver’s license revocation), and forfeiture of
In addition to these penalties, drivers can also be required to use vehicle immobilization or an ignition interlock device, and to pay a “Driver Responsibility Fee.” As we mentioned, for High BAC Offenses, there are even harsher penalties for those who are convicted.
Discuss Your Case with a Birmingham DUI Defense Lawyer
Do you need help with your DUI defense? An aggressive Birmingham DUI defense lawyer can help. Contact the law office of Paul J. Tafelski for more information.