In 2003 there were 340 deaths related to drinking and driving. The legislature acted to lower the BAC threshold for drinking and driving from .10 to .08. By 2011, drinking and driving related deaths had dropped to 253. The law lowering the limit was originally temporary. It would have reverted back to .10 on October 1st. The Senate unanimously voted to retain the .08 threshold. This was not entirely unexpected based on the relatively recent passage of the “Superdrunk” law. It seems the Michigan legislature aims to take a hard line with respect to drinking and driving offenses across the board. If you or someone you know is charged with a drinking and driving offense, it could have serious repercussions with respect to driving privileges and your criminal record. An experienced attorney can minimize this effect.
Canadian citizens and nationals living in the province of Ontario beware that if you are convicted of Drunk Driving / OWI / OWVI here in Michigan, will be punished twice if the right steps are not taken. Michigan and Ontario maintain a treaty that requires sharing driver’s license information even though Treaties by a state and a foreign nation are prohibited by the U.S. Constitution; the treaty utilizes a little known exception to the U.S. Constitution concerning Drunk Driving / OWI / OWVI. Section 42.1 of Ontario’s Highway traffic act maintains certain New York and Michigan convictions carrying mandatory suspension of your Canadian license where the conviction itself would not cause an American in the same circumstances to lose his or her license. The ramification of a conviction for a Canadian citizen who works in the United States can be even worse. Though it carries few immigration consequences, the same as U.S. citizens with Drunk Driving / OWI / OWVI cannot freely travel to Canada. A Canadian citizen with a Drunk Driving / OWI / OWVI cannot freely travel to the US.
Below we have included a list of all Michigan laws which carry a mandatory suspension of your Canadian license.
- Failure to stop at the scene of an accident involving injury or death of a person, under Michigan Compiled Law, Sections 257.617 and 257.617a.
- Operation of a motor vehicle while impaired by or under the influence of an intoxicating liquor or a controlled substance, or a combination of them, under Michigan Compiled Law, Section 257.625 (3).
- Operation of a motor vehicle with over .08 grams or more of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, per 210 litres of breath or per 67 millilitres of urine, under Michigan Compiled Law, Section 625 (1) (b).
- Refusal to provide a chemical breath analysis, under Michigan Compiled Law, Section 257.625a.
- Operation of a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, controlled substance or a combination of them, causing serious impairment to a person, under Michigan Compiled Law, Section 257.625(5).
- Operation of a motor vehicle while impaired by or under the influence of an intoxicating liquor or a controlled substance, or a combination of them, under Michigan Compiled Law, Section 257.625 (4).
Are you a Canadian Citizen or Resident arrested on suspicion of a Drunk Driving / OWI / OWVI here in Michigan? We know the law and have helped other Canadians keep their license and avoid additional punishments (such as being unable to travel into the US) where other attorneys have not. To retain Garmo & Kiste, PLC, call us at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation.