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If you have recently been arrested and charged with driving under the influence, familiarizing yourself with Michigan DUI laws is important. The penalties for drunk driving are serious, but expert legal representation can lessen the impact a DUI charge has on your life.
There are two types of DUI violations: common law and statutory. If you are charged with a common law violation, it means that your ability to drive was negatively affected by the consumption of alcohol or other substances. This charge relies on “observational” evidence’’—that is, a witness’s testimony, on your driving patterns, appearance, and behavior at the time of your arrest. In most cases, the witness is the arresting officer.
Even if the officer testifies that you were under the influence, your DUI lawyer may attribute your behavior and appearance to other factors. For example, if the officer states that your eyes were bloodshot and your speech was slurred, your attorney may argue that allergies and fatigue made you appear intoxicated.
If you are charged with a statutory or “per se” violation, it means that your blood alcohol content was over the legal limit. The legal limit for drivers over the age of 21 is .08%, while for minors it is .02%. In order to secure a conviction, the prosecution must prove that your test results were over the legal limit.
Breath tests are known for a host of problems. Medical conditions, mouthwash, and improper training on the officer’s part can often affect the results. Your attorney may investigate the breath test to determine if the results were accurate.
The penalties for violating Michigan DUI laws include jail time, fines, community service, and the loss of driving privileges. In addition to these penalties, Michigan DUI offenders face increased auto insurance costs (or the insurance provider may drop the coverage altogether).
If you have a pending DUI case, contact The Barone DUI Defense Firm. Their experienced DUI lawyers can explain Michigan DUI laws to you and work aggressively to fight your drinking and driving charges. Submit the details of your case online to receive a free consultation and a copy of The Michigan DUI Book, which offers information for citizens on how to fight a Michigan DUI charge.
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