Michigan DUI Laws

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Michigan DUI laws—or OUI laws—state that any driver over 21 cannot have a blood-alcohol level of 0.08%. Receiving multiple convictions or driving with a passenger under 16 can result in higher penalties.
In the United States, over 10,000 people are killed as a result of drunk driving crashes each year.
Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a dangerous crime, and penalties vary by state. Even a first-time offense can cost drivers up to $10,000 in fines and legal fees—and it will most certainly impact your car insurance rates, too.
The car insurance comparison and broker app Jerry has compiled everything you need to know about DUIs in Michigan.
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What is an OUI?

Like some other states, Michigan favors the term OUI instead of DUI. An OUI is “operating under the influence.” This means that a driver can be charged even if their vehicle is not in motion. A driver who intends to or makes moves to drive can be convicted of an OUI.
Michigan drivers could also be charged with an OWVI, which is “operating while visibly impaired.” While an OUI is more serious than an OWVI, a driver could be charged with an OWVI simply by showing signs of impairment from drugs or alcohol.

OUI in Michigan

Michigan OUI laws prohibit driving or controlling a vehicle if the driver:
  • has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least 0.08%
  • is under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance
  • has any trace of controlled substances (illegal drugs) in the body
Every state has an implied consent law stipulating that you consent to be tested if you’re suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Refusing to comply with a test from law enforcement often results in immediate penalties.

Penalties for OUI in Michigan

Penalties for OUIs in Michigan are determined by the severity of the offense and the number of prior convictions in the last seven years.

First offense

PenaltyDescription
Fine$100-$500
JailUp to 93 days
License suspensionUp to 6 months
Vehicle immobilizationUp to 180 days
Community serviceUp to 360 hours

Second conviction

PenaltyDescription
Fine$200-$1,000
JailUp to 1 year
License suspensionUp to 6 months
Vehicle immobilizationUp to 180 days
Community serviceUp to 90 days

Third conviction

PenaltyDescription
Fine$500-$5,000
JailUp to 5 years
License suspensionUp to 8 years
Vehicle immobilizationUp to 3 years
Community serviceUp to 180 days
Drivers who were transporting a passenger under 16 at the time of the offense face additional penalties, including up to 90 days of community service and $1,000 in fines.
Penalties also increase for drivers who have a BAC of 0.17% or greater.
Key Takeaway Minimum penalties for DUIs increase for each subsequent offense.

Restricted licenses

Drivers can apply for a restricted license with a mandatory ignition interlocking device (IID) after the first 30 days of their license suspension. The waiting time is increased to 45 days if the driver had a BAC of 0.17% or higher or was transporting a minor passenger.
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Does a DUI impact car insurance in Michigan?

Yes, insurance companies take DUIs very seriously and you’ll be classified as a high-risk driver. Some companies may deny you coverage altogether.
It can be difficult to secure insurance with a DUI on your record, so you’ll probably need to look at several providers. Jerry can quickly compare rates from up to 50 top insurers so that you don’t have to spend time completing long online forms and dealing with sales calls.
Expect your rates to rise substantially after a DUI. Your insurance company will also need to file an SR-22 in Michigan on your behalf to confirm that you hold the state-mandated minimum insurance.

Other effects of a DUI

Beyond the conviction penalties and higher insurance rates, your life can be severely impacted by a DUI.
License revocation: After a DUI, you run the risk of having your license revoked—especially if you have multiple DUIs or other offenses.
Ignition interlock device (IID): Drivers who are convicted of a DUI in Michigan may have to use an IID for a specified period, depending on the number of convictions. An IID is installed in the car and deactivates the engine if alcohol is detected on the driver’s breath.
Background checks: DUIs appear on background checks, which could adversely impact your future employment opportunities.

How to find cheap insurance after a DUI

If you need help finding affordable insurance after a DUI conviction, Jerry can help. After providing you with a comprehensive cross-analysis of the best policies across providers, Jerry will handle the phone calls, paperwork, and renewals for your top pick so that you don’t have to.
To ensure you always have the lowest rate, Jerry will send you new quotes every time your policy comes up for renewal. This level of service is why Jerry earned a 4.6/5 rating on the App Store and made it the top insurance app in the country.
“I saw an ad for Jerry on Instagram and decided to give it a try. I have a terrible driving record, but Nathan still helped me. Before, almost no one wanted to insure me. Now, I have a great policy and save $200/month. I’m one happy gal!” —Terri C.
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