Approachable, Experienced And Dedicated To Our Clients

Three misconceptions about DUI laws in Michigan

On Behalf of | Jun 24, 2024 | Criminal Defense

In 2020, Michigan roads saw over 4,000 alcohol-related accidents—a sobering reminder that driving under the influence (DUI) remains a serious threat to public safety. Unfortunately, many people hold misconceptions about DUI laws in the United States, which can exacerbate this problem and lead to devastating outcomes.

In Michigan, where DUI laws are strict and penalties are severe, it is crucial to separate fact from fiction. Here are three common misconceptions about DUI laws in Michigan.

Myth #1: You cannot get a DUI on prescription medication

Many mistakenly think that taking prescription medication will not lead to a DUI charge. After all, you are taking it on doctor’s orders. Unfortunately, this misconception can have serious consequences.

The reality is that many prescription medications, such as opioids, benzodiazepines and sleep aids, can impair your ability to drive. If you are taking prescription medication and get behind the wheel, you are risking a DUI charge.

Myth #2: You can refuse a breathalyzer test without consequences

While it is true that refusing a breathalyzer test may seem like a way to avoid providing evidence, it is not a reliable strategy. In Michigan, refusing a breathalyzer test can lead to a two-year suspension of your driver’s license. This is because Michigan has an Implied Consent Law, which states that by driving on Michigan roads, you have implicitly agreed to submit to a breathalyzer test if stopped by law enforcement.

Myth #3: A DUI is only a misdemeanor

Although a first-time DUI offense is typically a misdemeanor, DUI laws can be complex and nuanced. Repeat offenders or those who cause serious injuries or fatalities, for instance, can face felony charges, which carry much harsher penalties. A felony DUI conviction in Michigan can have severe and long-lasting consequences, including up to five years in prison and fines of up to $5,000.

When it comes to DUI laws, it is crucial to separate fact from fiction. Do not let misconceptions put you or others at risk. Instead, take control of your knowledge and stay safe on the road. Remember, DUI laws are in place to protect everyone, and understanding them can be a matter of life and death.