How Michigan’s Super Drunk Statute Works
A night out with friends, maybe a few drinks during the game, and maybe a few more after victory and a decision to ride yourself home while intoxicated could land you into problems with the law.
Now, if you’re in Michigan, you live in a liberal state where you are allowed to drink and drive, provided your alcohol limit also known as Blood Alcohol Level (BAC) is under .08. Once you reach or exceed the .08 limit, you are above the legal limit and vulnerable for arrest.
However, once your BAC reaches .17, which is roughly double the legal limit, you are considered as “Super Drunk.”
While the super drunk offense is still considered as a misdemeanor in Michigan, the consequences are far-reaching and might be quite severe in some cases. In fact, the charges or rather penalties for super drunk are twice, on average to those of standard DUI charges and this is why it’s always advisable that you hire Patrick O’Keefe a criminal justice attorney in Lansing MI, once you’re charged with Super Drunk driving.
What is Super Drunk
In late October 2010, the state of Michigan enacted a new law known as the High Alcohol Enhanced Law.
The High Alcohol Enhanced Law, popularly known as the Super DUI or Super Drunk OWI law, usually addresses the first time DUI offenders.
Like its name suggests the Super Drunk enhanced law enhances or rather boosts the penalties for those convicted of those driving with excessive BAC.
Typically, a conviction under the new super drunk law will result in a myriad of consequences, including compromising your driving privileges as well as jeopardizing your future employment. More disturbing, a conviction under this law will create a permanent criminal record for you.
Super Drunk Statistics
Not every drunk driver is convicted with the super drunk offense.
As we had mentioned earlier, this law is only applicable to first time DUI offenders or those with no previous DUI records in the last seven years.
In addition to having no prior drunk driving records, the super drunk law is applicable when your BAC is .17 or higher.
In a nutshell, you can only be convicted for super drunk if:
- It’s the first DUI offense
- Have no previous drunk driving convictions in the last seven years
- Your blood alcohol content is more than .17
Regarding BAC, a unit of alcohol increases your BAC by .025, so when you’re convicted of being super drunk, you have approximately six to eight drinks of alcohol.
If this is your repeated offense, regardless of whether it’s .08 or 0.17, it’s regarded as a second offense category. The second offense charge is a whole new and different crime from Super Drunk.
For drivers with no prior drunk driving convictions, they are liable for “enhanced” penalties including:
- 45 days of no driving
- 320 days of controlled driving
- Possibility of a jail term
Super Drunk vs. Standard OWI
|Consequences||Standard OWI||Super Drunk|
|Potential Days in Jail||93 days||180 days|
|License Suspension||30-day suspension||45-days suspension|
|Restricted driving||150-days restriction||320-days restriction|
|Extras||Have a BAIID installed in your car, Receive alcohol treatment for a minimum of one year|
Collateral Consequences of Super Drunk Conviction
As we had mentioned in the introduction, the consequences of super drunk charges are far-reaching, and will even go beyond what we’ve mentioned above.
In any case, like any other felony, the consequences will splatter to other areas of your life.
For instance, your insurance provider will require you to remit higher premiums because you’ve already displayed negligence in your personality. In extreme cases, some of the insurance providers might even drop your insurance altogether, rendering you unable to drive.
Additionally, your super drunk criminal records can be accessed by third parties, and this will severely jeopardize your reputation when looking for a job.
And as we had mentioned, the judge might require you to install a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) during your restricted driving period. Understand that it will be your responsibility to purchase, install and maintain the BAIID and might have an effect on your finances.
Why You Need a Michigan Super Drunk Attorney
When convicted using the Super Drunk law, the stakes are always high, as you could even end up in jail.
Fortunately, you can hire Patrick O’Keefe Law to fight for you.