Can You Turn Right on Red in Michigan?

Turning right on red is legal in Michigan as long as you come to a full stop first and ensure there aren’t any no turn on red signs posted.
Written by Mary Cahill
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
Turning right on red in
is legal, as long as you come to a full stop at the light and make sure there isn’t a no turn on red sign posted. You must also grant the right of way to any pedestrians, cyclists, or drivers at the intersection. 
In every driving scenario, when you see a red light—you stop. While you’re legally permitted to make a right on red in Michigan, you cannot do so at every traffic light. And if you make an illegal right turn on red, you could end up with a ticket. 

Can you turn right on red in Michigan?

According to Michigan state law
section 257.612
, drivers are permitted to turn right on red as long as: 
  • The vehicle stops before entering the intersection
  • The vehicle has yielded the
    right of way
    to pedestrians, bicyclists, and other traffic lawfully using the intersection
  • There is no sign prohibiting a turn on red 
The best thing you can do if you’re planning to make a right on red is to take your time. Stop and look around to determine whether any no turn on red signs are posted. Do not turn until the intersection is clear of other vehicles or pedestrians. 
If you are approaching a flashing red light, treat this as you would a stop sign. Come to a complete stop, grant the right of way to another driver if they arrive at the intersection before you, then proceed with caution.

What about left turns on red? 

In Michigan, you can only turn left at a red light if you’re turning onto a one-way street. In this situation, you must again follow the standard right-of-way rules so that you make the turn safely. 
Key Takeaway Make sure you use caution when you approach a red light with the intention to turn left. Yield the right of way to drivers traveling straight through the intersection as well as pedestrians and cyclists.
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Penalties for an illegal right turn on red in Michigan

If you make a right turn on red in an unauthorized area or cause an accident while doing so, you should expect to be handed a ticket. The fine may be up to $100. On top of that, a conviction of this civil infraction will result in two demerit points added to your
driving record
Accumulating an excessive amount of demerit points against your driver’s license may result in a
suspended license
. Keep in mind that having a license suspension on your record will almost certainly cause your
car insurance
premium to rise by an average of $120.25 per month. You may also be required to carry
SR-22 insurance in Michigan
before getting your license reinstated.   
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