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The Difference Between a Misdemeanor and Felony DUI

The Difference Between a Misdemeanor and Felony DUI.jpgIn Michigan, being convicted of a misdemeanor or felony DUI can result in serious repercussions. It is important to contact an Ann Arbor DUI attorney immediately following an arrest. An experienced attorney may be able to help reduce the charge asserted against you to a lesser offense or have it completely dismissed. Do not delay in obtaining legal counsel and guidance. Read on to learn more about the difference between a misdemeanor and felony DUI in Washtenaw County.

Ann Arbor Misdemeanor DUI

In Michigan, it is against the law to drive under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance. If a driver's blood alcohol content (BAC) is above the legal limit of .08%, he/she will be charged with a DUI. A misdemeanor charge will often apply if it is the driver's first DUI offense. If the driver is convicted of first offense Operating While Intoxicated (drunk driving), he/she may be punished as follows:

  • A first time offender could be sentenced up to 93 days in jail

  • Pay a fine between $100 to $500

  • Suffer a license suspension of up to 6 months

  • Six points on the driving record

  • $2000 Driver Responsibility Fees

In addition, if a driver operates a motor vehicle under the influence of a controlled substance such as marijuana, cocaine, or heroin, he/she can expect to face the same penalties as a drunk driver. The prosecutor will only have to prove that the driver was driving with a controlled substance in his/her system.

Ann Arbor Felony DUI

A driver will be charged with a felony DUI if he/she is subsequently charged (usually third offense) for a DUI within any time period after his/her first conviction. A felony DUI may involve alcohol and/or a controlled substance.

In addition, a driver may be charged with a felony DUI if he/she causes property damage and/or bodily injury while under the influence. If the driver is transporting a child under the influence of alcohol, he/she may also be charged with a felony DUI.

If a driver is convicted of a felony DUI, he/she may be punished as follows:

  • 30 days in jail to 5 years in prison

  • Pay a fine between $500 to $5,000

  • Suffer a license revocation of 1 to 5 years

  • Mandatory vehicle immobilization from 1 to 3 years

A felony conviction is serious. Speak with an experienced attorney regarding your legal defense options. The biggest differences between a misdemeanor and felony DUI are whether you are incarcerated and whether your license is suspended or revoked. As mentioned above, an Ann Arbor misdemeanor DUI can lead to jail time in the discretion of the sentencing judge. However, a felony DUI may result in serving a mandatory jail or prison sentence.

Ann Arbor Misdemeanor and Felony DUI Attorney

I invite you to contact my law office to discuss representation for your misdemeanor or felony DUI charge in confidence. Once retained, I can thoroughly review the nature of your case and provide you with legal guidance and advice on how to proceed with the best defense possible. Do not delay in seeking legal representation. Doing so can hurt your case.

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