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Michigan Zero Tolerance Penalties

We get many calls from parents regarding a charge of Minor Operating a Motor Vehicle with a BAC. This is commonly called “Zero Tolerance” as the Michigan legislature has made it strictly illegal for a minor to operate any motor vehicle after having consumed alcohol. Many parents mistakenly think that this is a form of Minor in Possession of alcohol, which is a much less serious offense.

We have seen minors plead guilty to this charge at their initial arraignment thinking it was an MIP case, only to have license sanctions, insurance rates increased, and a crime that can NEVER be expunged from their record. After the fact it is many times too late to withdraw the plea and judges have a wide range of discretion to deny these motions.

Do not make this mistake. Zero Tolerance or Minor with a BAC is a drunk driving charge and should be taken seriously. There have been occasions where this charge has been able to be reduced to a non-alcohol offense depending on the blood alcohol level and the minor’s individual circumstances.

If this is your first Zero Tolerance conviction:

  • Community service for not more than 45 days and/or a fine of up to $250. MCL 257.625(12)(a). Effective September 30, 2003, the amount of community service is stated as 360 hours (equivalent to 45 days at 8 hours per day).
  • Driver’s license is restricted for 30 days.  This is very harsh as an Operating While Visibly Impaired has a restricted license from day one. This would keep a minor from driving at all during the 30 day period and could cause problems with employment or school. 
  • 4 points are added to the offender’s driving record.
  • Driver Responsibility Fee of $500 for 2 consecutive years.

If this is your second violation within 7 years of preceding conviction:

  • One or more of the following:
    • Up to a $500 fine.
    • Up to 60 days of community service.
    • Up to 93 days in jail.
  • Driver’s license suspension for 90 days.
  • If there is a prior drunk or drugged driving conviction, there is a driver license revocation and denial for a minimum of 1 year (minimum of 5 years if there was a prior revocation within 7 years).
  • 4 points are added to the offender’s driving record.
  • Driver Responsibility Fee of $500 for 2 consecutive years.

Free Michigan DUI Consultation

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During this free telephone consultation, you will find out the following:

  • A detailed overview of the court process in your jurisdiction
  • Exactly how much your DUI defense will cost
  • Why our law firm is uniquely qualified to handle your DUI case

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Michigan DUI & Drunk Driving | 303 Paw Paw St. #3, Paw Paw, MI 49079 | Phone: (269) 281-4003 | Fax: (866) 904-1479