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Operating while intoxicated: Things you need to know

Do you live in Michigan? It doesn't matter if you're one of our Ann Arbor readers or reside in another part of the state, it's important to become familiar with the operating while intoxicated laws that are in place.

Just like the other 49 states, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 percent or higher.

With drunk driving remaining a major issue in the state of Michigan, among other parts of the country, authorities continue to crack down in the hope of making progress and keeping people safe while on the road.

The best way to avoid an operating while intoxicated charge is to never get behind the wheel if you've been drinking. Even if you have reason to believe that your blood alcohol content level is lower than 0.08 percent, you should still stay off the road. After all, it's better to be safe than sorry.

An OWI charge is one thing. An OWI conviction is another thing entirely. If you're actually convicted of this crime, it will impact your life in a number of ways. Not only could it cost you quite a bit of money, but it could also mean that you lose your license for an extended period of time.

Making matters worse, this could have a negative impact on both your personal and professional life. For instance, your car insurance premium will skyrocket if you're convicted of drunk driving.

Penalties can be severe

Even on your first offense, if you're convicted of operating while intoxicated in Michigan, you'll be faced with a minimum license suspension or revocation.

It's also possible to be fined, be required to install an ignition interlock device, and be required to attend alcohol education class. Along with this, if you've been convicted in the past, you could find yourself faced with a prison sentence.

Due to the severity of operating while intoxicated, you never want to be charged with this crime in the state of Michigan.

If you do find yourself in this position, you need to learn more about your rights, including the defense strategy you can use to avoid the most serious p unishment.

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