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How can an increased BAC level legally affect an individual?

Many Michiganders partake in alcoholic beverages, which is completely legal. However, sometimes individuals are pulled over and accused of drinking too much to safely operate a motor vehicle. When this happens, they are often arrested and come face-to-face with drunk driving charges. A criminal conviction for drunk driving, and therefore the penalties one may face, are often contingent upon the individual's blood alcohol content level. Therefore, it is important to understand BAC and how it can affect a driver physically and legally.

The Centers for Disease Control say that a relatively low BAC, just a mere .02 percent, can cause a decrease in the ability to multi-task. This means that driving while performing another activity, such as talking on the phone or changing the radio, can become more challenging and dangerous. At a BAC of .05 percent, a driver may experience reduced coordination and trouble steering. Though these levels of BAC can bring legal troubles, they will not result in a per se DUI conviction.

A BAC of .08 percent, on the other hand, is the legal limit, and those found to be operating a motor vehicle with such a level may be facing a difficult battle. Anything above this point may cause an individual to have perception difficulty and perception trouble. However, simply because an individual is arrested and claimed to have a BAC of .08 percent or higher does not mean that he or she is automatically guilty.

Instead, an individual accused of drunk driving may enact a legal defense in an attempt to protect his or her freedom, license, reputation, and finances. These matters are often complicated, though, so speaking to an experienced Kalamazoo attorney may be beneficial.

Source: CDC, "Effects of Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC)," Accessed on May 1, 2015

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