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Will Michigan Drug Conviction Cause a Driver’s License Suspension?

Sep 11th, 2018 Marijuana Laws Will Michigan Drug Conviction Cause a Driver’s License Suspension?

Convictions for many drug charges in Michigan will result in a suspension, restriction or even revocation of your driving privilege.  This is true even if you were not driving at the time of the offense.  The length, type, and severity of the driver license sanction will depend on the charge you are facing and on your prior record.

If you have no prior drug violations, then in most instances your driver license will be suspended for six months. You may be able to obtain restricted privileges, but no matter what, there will be no driving at all for at least the first 30 days. If you wish to obtain restricted privileges, then your lawyer will need to obtain a court order.  It is the judge presiding over your case and not the secretary of state who makes this decision.  But it is discretionary, so the judge is not obligated to give you restricted privileges just because you ask for them.  Your lawyer will explain to you all the factors that will be considered by the judge in making this decision.

On the other hand, if you have one or more prior drug convictions and these convictions happened with the prior seven years, then not only will your driver license will be suspended for one full year, you will also not be able to obtain any restricted driving privileges.

Depending on many things, you may be able to avoid the driver license sanction altogether.  Of course, avoiding a conviction is one sure way of doing this, but if you are eligible for section 7411, then this might be another way of avoiding a driver license sanction for many first-time drug offenses.

So far, everything discussed has addressed situations where you were not driving or otherwise operating a motor vehicle.  When drugs and driving are mixed, the driver license sanctions are more somewhat more draconian. For a first offense drugged driving OWI charge, your driver license would be suspended for 30 days followed by 150 of restricted privileges. If you are convicted of an impaired driving and the impairment is caused by drugs, then the restricted privilege is for 180 days. In both instances, your attorney will not need to petition the court.  The secretary of state will automatically give you restricted privileges. Be aware also that repeat drugged driving convictions can result in a lifetime revocation of your driving privileges.  See Michigan Compiled Laws 257.319(8)(b) for more details about these driver license sanctions.