Michigan OWI Penalties

Did you know that operating a vehicle while intoxicated, or OWI, is a serious crime in the state of Michigan? In fact, an OWI conviction can lead to severe penalties including license suspension, community service, expensive fines, and even jail time. If you were recently charged with OWI, hiring an experienced Michigan OWI attorney can help reduce the Michigan OWI penalties you now face.

First Offense Penalties

If this is your first OWI charge, you can expect to be fined anywhere from $100 to $500 if you are convicted. In addition, your driver’s license may be suspended for 30 days, and restricted for an additional 150 days. You may also be required to complete 360 hours of community service and have an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle. Finally, you may have to spend up to 93 days behind bars.

Second Offense Penalties

Think those punishments are severe? If this is your second OWI offense, you can be fined as much as $1,000, lose your driving privileges for a year, and be sentenced to a year in jail. Your sentence will also include mandatory community service, and your vehicle will be confiscated for 90 to 180 days. You may also have to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle.

Third Offense Penalties

If this is your third OWI offense, your fines increase to $500-$5,000. Your driver’s license will be suspended for a minimum of five years, and you will be required to complete 60 to 180 days of community service. Your vehicle will also be impounded for one to three years, and your jail sentence will range from one to five years. The judge is also more likely to order that you install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle at this point.

In addition to these penalties, if your OWI led to a serious injury, you can be fined anywhere from $100 to $5,000, and you may spend up to two years in jail. If a death occurred, your fines will range from $2,500 to $10,000 and you may be sentenced up to fifteen years in a federal prison. If the person killed was a police officer or firefighter, your prison sentence can increase to 20 years.

Importance of Contacting An Attorney

As you can see, the penalties for operating a vehicle while intoxicated are quite severe. If you have been charged with OWI in Michigan, it is important to obtain help from an experienced OWI defense attorney before your day in court. Attorney Patrick T. Barone has over a decade of experience representing people like you, and has the legal know-how to help you fight the charges against you. Increase your chances for success. Contact the Barone Defense Firm today for your free case evaluation.