If you are arrested for drunk driving in Michigan, you are required to take a chemical test – of your blood, breath or urine – to determine your bodily alcohol content (BAC).
You can refuse to take the test. But if you refuse, your license will be immediately destroyed and you will be given a paper permit. You may drive on the paper permit until your criminal case is resolved in court.
You can appeal this suspension. But you have a limited time – 14 days – to do so.
All of this might seem harsh. But that is how Michigan’s Implied Consent Law works.
What You Need to Know About DUI Breath Tests in Michigan
- Tests to determine BAC – especially roadside breath tests – have flaws. Roadside test devices are not always accurately calibrated.
- There are similar problems with Breathalyzer tests administered at the police station. The Breathalyzer machine must be adjusted properly and kept absolutely clean. The results may be skewed, for instance, if the police officer’s hands are unwashed.
- The police officer must give you a clear and unequivocal warning of the consequences of refusing a Breathalyzer test.
- Police officers must follow strict protocols in arresting a person for suspected drunk driving and testing them for alcohol consumption. Many officers have not been properly trained in these protocols. Sometimes they make mistakes that can invalidate the entire arrest.
- Alcohol breath tests operate on the assumption that human beings have essentially the same body chemistry, and that the machine works the same way every time it is used. These assumptions are not always accurate.
- A Michigan DUI/OWI defense lawyer can review the circumstances of your arrest to determine if you have a valid defense to the charges against you.
- Michigan State Police