Many factors can influence the way a person is punished by the court system if they are convicted of a drunk driving crime in Michigan. Particularly, if the individual has prior convictions for drunk driving and the level of their blood alcohol concentration can affect how severely they are punished.
For the purposes of this post, the information provided will presume that the individual in question has been convicted of their first drunk driving offense. In Michigan, a blood alcohol content (BAC) level of .17 is a threshold between less serious and more serious penalties.
For example, a person convicted of a drunk driving crime with a BAC under .17 may have to pay a fine of up to $500. If that person’s BAC was at or exceeded .17, then that fine could climb up to $700. A BAC under .17 could result in up to 93 days of jail time, but if their BAC was at or above .17, that duration of incarceration could extend up to 180 days.
However, generally, a drunk driving offense will result in a driver receiving 6 points on their license, but more significantly, that driver will have their license suspension. How long is based on the driver’s BAC. While a BAC level under .17 can result in a 180-day license suspension, a BAC level at or over .17 can result in a suspension of up to one year.
A conviction based on drunk driving charges is serious. These penalties and others can affect how an individual lives their life, how they engage with their loved ones and how they are able to hold down employment. Since a drunk driving conviction can have such significant effects on individuals’ lives, many who face drunk driving charges choose to confront their legal problems with the help of drunk driving defense attorneys.