Category Archives: Aida Spahic

All You Need To Know About Michigan’s Interlock Ignition Device Law

The Law

If you have any of the following combination of drunk or drugged driving convictions, the law indicates that you are a Habitual Offender:

  • Two or more convictions within 7 years.
  • Three or more convictions within 10 years.

The Secretary of State is required to revoke the driver license of a Habitual Offender and deny his or her application for another license.

After the minimum period of revocation/denial, a Habitual Offender may be eligible for a driver license appeal hearing. If a restricted license is ordered, the hearing officer must require that the Habitual Offender install a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device [BAIID] on any vehicle he or she owns or intends to operate. The person cannot drive until the BAIID is properly installed and proof of installation is presented to a local Secretary of State branch office.

Beginning October 31, 2010, anyone with a restricted license that requires a BAIID must continue to drive with the device until the Secretary of State authorizes him or her to remove it.

How does an Interlock Ignition Device Work?

A BAIID is a breath alcohol analyzer, with computer logic and an internal memory. It connects with a motor vehicle’s ignition and other control systems. The BAIID measures the driver’s bodily alcohol content [BAC], and keeps the vehicle from starting if the BAC is .025 or higher. The device will also ask for random retests while the person is driving [rolling retests].

If the BAIID records 3 start-up test failures in a monitoring period, or 1 rolling retest failure, or if it detects tampering, the vehicle must be taken to a service center immediately. If that service is not done, the BAIID will go into a “lock-out” mode, and the vehicle cannot be operated.

Test failures, tampering, or other BAIID-related violations will result in an extension of the time before the driver can ask for another driver license appeal hearing, or may require that the original license revocation/denial be reinstated.

So to put it simply: If you blow into your device and it detects alcohol, you’re not going anywhere and you’ll have to wait even longer to get your license back

How do I get a Interlock Ignition Device Installed?

The device must be installed by a vendor that is approved by the State of Michigan. A list of current vendors should be included with your driver’s license appeal order.

You may also visit this link to view a list of approved vendors http://michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7-127-15719-70471–,00.html

Reports and Removal Authorization

If a hearing officer orders a restricted license for you with a BAIID requirement, you must drive under the restrictions, with a properly installed BAIID, for at lest 1 full year.

If there are alcohol readings or other BAIID violations after the device is installed, your vendor will report them to the Secretary of State. As indicated before, the possible consequences of those reports may include an extension of the time before you can request another license appeal hearing, or the reinstatement of the original license revocation/denial.

When you are eligible, you may request a license appeal hearing to ask that the restrictions be removed from your license. At that hearing, you must present the report(s) from your BAIID provider(s) to prove that the device was installed for at least the minimum required length of time, and to establish whether there were any alcohol readings or other BAIID violations.

If your hearing was held, or your restricted license that requires a BAIID, was issued on or after October 31, 2010, you must keep the device on your vehicle until the Secretary of State authorizes you to remove it.

What is considered an Interlock Ignition Device Violation?

Violations of the BAIID program for habitual offenders are divided into “minor” and “major” categories.

Minor Violations:

  • A driver has 2 months after the BAIID is installed to become familiar with the device, and to learn that certain substances, such as mouth wash, may cause the device to record a test failure. After the first 2 months, it is a minor violation if the BAIID records 3 start-up test failures within a monitoring period. A start-up test failure means the BAIID has prevented the vehicle from starting. A monitoring period is the full length of time the BAIID is required to be properly installed.
  • If the driver fails to report the BAIID installer for servicing within 7 days after his or her scheduled monitoring date, it is a minor violation.

Major Violations:

  • Rolling retest violation:
    • Failing to take the rolling retest when prompted by the BAIID; or
    • The random retest detects a BAC of .025 or higher, and there is no subsequent sample with a BAC of less than .025 within 5 minutes.
  • An arrest or conviction for drunk and/or drugged driving.
  • Tampering with the BAIID.
  • Circumventing the BAIID.
  • Three minor violations within a monitoring period.
  • Removing the BAIID without having another device installed within 7 days, unless the Secretary of State has authorized the removal.
  • Operating a vehicle without a properly installed BAIID.
Consequences

Minor violations will result in a 3-month extension of the time before you may request another license appeal hearing.

Major violations will result in the immediate reinstatement of your original driver license revocation/denial. You may appeal that action to the DAAD. The appeal must be in writing, and must be submitted within 14 days after the effective date of the reinstatement.

Interlock Ignition Device + Michigan’s Super Drunk Driving Law
Effective October 31, 2010, the law requires tougher sanctions for a driver convicted for operating a vehicle with a BAC of .17 or higher, even if it is her or her first conviction.

If you are convicted of the High BAC crime, in addition to any penalties ordered by the court, your driver license will be suspended for 1 year. You will be eligible for a restricted license after serving 45 days of the suspension if a BAIID is installed on every vehicle you operate. The restrictions remain in effect for the remainder of the 1-year period, and until the Secretary of State authorizes you to remove the BAIID, and until you pay a license reinstatement fee.

A High BAC offender has the option to keep the license suspension for the full year, and not have the BAIID installed. At the end of that year, if no other sanctions have been imposed, you may pay the license reinstatement fee and return to full driving.

If you decide that you want the restricted license, you will have 2 months after the BAIID is installed to become familiar with the device, and to learn that certain substances, such as mouth wash, may cause the device to record a test failure. After the first 2 months, if monitoring of the BAIID reveals any instance of a .025 or higher BAC reading, you will receive another 1-year suspension of your driver license, and again be eligible for a restricted license after servicing 45 days of the suspension if a BAIID is properly installed on every vehicle you operate.

If you are arrested for driving without a properly installed BAIID, the law enforcement officer must impound the vehicle. If you own or co-own the vehicle, the officer must destroy the metal registration plate.

If you are convicted of operating a vehicle without a properly installed BAIID, there will be another 1-year suspension of your driver license, and you will again be eligible for a restricted license after serving 45 days of the suspension if a BAIID is properly installed on every vehicle you operate.

For more about Michigan’s Super Drunk Driving Law click here 

For more information you can also visit Michigan’s Secretary of State website 

If you have questions about a driver’s license appeal or a DUI Charge contact Aida Spahic at (248) 624-5500 or  visit our website

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Driver's License, Drunk Driving/OWI/DUI/OWVI/DWI, Holly Valente

Super Drunk: More Rehab or Longer Jail?

According to LivingstonDaily.com, this seven-month-old “super drunk” driving law is sending more offenders in the Lansing area to rehab and is not, as originally expected, giving them longer jail sentences.  Factors include the law’s one year alcohol rehabilitation requirement, jail overcrowding, and reductions to Impaired Driving in exchange to enrollment in Eaton County’s sobriety court programs.

For the full article click here 

For more info on Michigan’s Super Drunk Law click here 

If you have been pulled over for a DUI/OWI charge in Michigan contact Daniel Ambrose at (248) 624-5500

www.ambroseduiattorney.com

 

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Drunk Driving/OWI/DUI/OWVI/DWI

Italy Revokes Snooki’s Driver’s License: Do You Know Michigan’s Driver’s License Restoration Laws?

The 23-year-old, who’s currently filming MTV’s “Jersey Shore” in the country along with the rest of the reality show cast, was attempting to drive around Florence in a Fiat Multipla with “Shore” star Deena Cortese when she got into a minor car accident with a police vehicle. The cruiser, funnily enough, was an escort appointed for the cast’s security, according to People.

Since she played bumper cars with police, Italian authorities have revoked her license, and according to Us Weekly, she could face a civil suit.

Read the full story here

While many here in the States aren’t overly concerned about the guidette’s lost license, license revocation is a serious matter that has a huge impact on people’s lives.

In Michigan you may face a license suspension or a license revocation.  If  your license has been suspended it means that there is a set period of time during which you are not allowed to drive. At the end of the suspension period, you will simply need to pay the reinstatement fee and any applicable driver responsibility fees in order to get your license back.

A revocation is a more serious matter and at the end of your revocation period you must APPLY to get your license back.  This involves a hearing where you must prove why you deserve to get your driver’s license back.

If you have lost your driver’s license and need help getting back on the road call Aida Spahic

at (248) 624-5500

You may also view our website for forms and applications

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Can I turn Left On A Red Light In Michigan?

According to MCL 257.612(1)(c)(ii), a driver facing a red light is able to make a left turn from a one-way or a two-way street onto a one-way roadway unless such turn is prohibited by some type of a sign.  Before making this left turn, a driver must make a complete stop before entering the crosswalk or intersection if there is no crosswalk.  Hmmm…interesting!  I always thought that you could only turn left on a red light if you are making that left from a one-way street onto a one-way roadway.  I was wrong!  You can make that left onto a one-way roadway even if you are on a two-way street!

Specifically, MCL 257.612(1)(c)(ii) states in part, “[v]ehicular traffic facing a steady red signal, after stopping before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection or at a limit line when marked or, if there is no crosswalk or limit line, before entering the intersection, may make…a left turn from a 1-way or 2-way street into a 1-way roadway carrying traffic in the direction of the left turn unless prohibited by sign, signal, marking, light, or other traffic control device. The vehicular traffic shall yield the right of way to pedestrians and bicyclists lawfully within an adjacent crosswalk and to other traffic lawfully using the intersection.

 

Aida@ambroselawgroup.com

If you’d like help with a  traffic ticket call  us at (248) 624-5500

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Traffic Citations/Laws

New DWI/Sobriety Court Pilot Project Program

On January 1, 2011, the new DWI/Sobriety Court Pilot Project Program will go into effect. It will apply to only those individuals convicted of two or more violations of operating a vehicle while intoxicated or while impaired. It will not apply to the individuals convicted of the following offenses:

MCL 257.625(2) — Authorizing or knowingly permitting another to operate a motor vehicle while intoxicated
MCL 257.625(4) — OUIL causing death
MCL 257.625(5) — OUIL causing serious impairment/injury
MCL 257.625(6) — Driving under 21 with “any bodily alcohol content”, unless conviction of MCL 257.625(6) was from another state or a local ordinance and precedes one conviction of operating a vehicle while intoxicated or while impaired
MCL 257.625(7) — OWI with a passenger under the age of 16
MCL 257.625(8) – Operating with the presence of Schedule I drugs (Marijuana, Heroin, Ecstasy, LSD, GHB, etc.)

The new DWI/Sobriety Court Pilot Project Program will only be available to those individuals who are arrested on or after January 1, 2011 and who have access to Sobriety Court and installation of an interlock.

After the Secretary of State has received notification from the Sobriety Court judge of the DWI/Sobriety Court participant’s enrollment in Sobriety Court and his/her ignition interlock installation, the Secretary of State will issue a restricted license after 45 days. This restricted license will permit the participant to operate only the vehicle that is equipped with an ignition interlock device, to take any required driving skills tests, and to drive to and from any combination of the participant’s residence, workplace, or school and a court-ordered alcohol or drug education or treatment. It is important to note that this restricted license will not allow travel during the course of employment or travel to court hearings or probation appointments.

After the participant completes the DWI/Sobriety Court interlock pilot program, he/she retains a restricted license unless he/she operates a motor vehicle without an ignition interlock device; removes, or causes to be removed, an ignition interlock device from a vehicle; is arrested for violating Section 625; is convicted or found responsible for any offenses that require the suspension, revocation, denial, or cancellation of the person’s operator’s or chauffeur’s license; or fails to pay any court-ordered fines or costs that resulted from the operation of a vehicle.

A restricted license will be effective until the Secretary of State issues an unrestricted license. An unrestricted license will not be issued by the Secretary of State until the Court notifies the Secretary of State that the participant has successfully completed the DWI/Sobriety Court program or the minimum period of license sanction otherwise required has been completed, whichever is later.

If the participant violates DWI/Sobriety Court Program or the interlock period the Secretary of State shall impose license sanctions and the driver will suffer the full length of the original suspension/revocation period.

All driver responsibility fees assessed by the Secretary of State for the convictions that led to the restricted license will be held in abeyance during the time the participant has a restricted license and is participating in the DWI/Sobriety Court Interlock Pilot Project. At the end of the person’s participation in the DWI/Sobriety Court Interlock Pilot Project, the driver responsibility fees will be assessed and required to be paid. Additionally, the vehicle of an individual admitted to the DWI/Sobriety court interlock pilot project program will be exempt from both immobilization and forfeiture if some conditions are met. First, he/she must remain in good standing with the DWI/Sobriety Court Pilot Project Program or successfully complete the program. Second, he/she must not subsequently violate a Michigan law for which vehicle immobilization or forfeiture is a sanction.

For full details regarding the new law, see MCL 257.304.

If you have any questions about your OWI/DWI/DUI charge contact Aida Spahic at (248) 624-5500

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Drunk Driving/OWI/DUI/OWVI/DWI, Sobriety Courty

Can My DUI Be Expunged?

Unfortunately, a drunk-driving conviction can never be expunged from one’s record.

According to MCL 780.621, a person may apply to have a conviction set aside for any crime except the following:

A conviction of a felony or an attempted felony punishable by life imprisonment
A conviction for a violation or attempted violation of criminal sexual conduct MCL 750.520c (criminal sexual conduct in the second degree), MCL 750.520d (criminal sexual conduct in the third degree), or MCL 750.520g (assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct)
A traffic offense

An OWI/DUI conviction is considered a traffic offense and therefore, cannot be expunged or set aside.

If you have questions about a drunk-driving charge contact Aida at (248) 624-5500

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Drunk Driving/OWI/DUI/OWVI/DWI, Expungements

The Criminal Process: What Happens After My Felony is “Bound-Over” to Circuit Court?

A felony case is transferred to Circuit Court after a Preliminary Examination bind-over or waiver.  Once the felony case is bound-over (transferred) to Circuit Court, Defendant is Arraigned, meaning that he/she is given formal notice of the charge(s) against him or her.  An Arraignment can usually be waived if Defendant has an attorney.  At the Arraignment, Defendant is provided a copy of the charging document, called an Information, advised of his/her constitutional rights, and given the opportunity to enter a plea to the charge(s) (plead guilty, not guilty, or stand mute).

If Defendant pleads guilty at the Arraignment, a Sentencing date is scheduled, usually within six (6) weeks.  If Defendant pleads not guilty or stands mute at the Arraignment, a Pre-Trial Conference is scheduled, usually within two (2) weeks.  A Pre-Trial Conference in Circuit Court is similar to a Pre-Trial Conference in District Court.  It is a meeting between an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney and Defendant (or his/her attorney) to discuss whether the case will be resolved prior to trial.  As in District Court, if a Plea Bargain is reached during the Circuit Court Pre-Trial Conference, Defendant will take a plea, usually that day, and then be sentenced, usually at a later date.  Also, at a Circuit Court Pre-Trial Conference, the case can be adjourned, set for a Motion Hearing to, for example, resolve evidentiary issues, or set for a Trial, either by a Jury, or a Judge.

If you have any questions about a legal charge pending against you please contact Aida at (248) 624-5500

Ambrose Law Group

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The Criminal Process: Preliminary Examination

A defendant has a right to a Preliminary Examination within 14 days of the Arraignment of a felony.  This 14-day-rule can be waived by Defendant so that Defendant may have his/her Preliminary Examination beyond the 14 days of the Arraignment.

A Preliminary Examination is a contested hearing, sometimes called a “probable cause hearing.”  At this hearing, Prosecutor must present witnesses to prove that there is probable cause to believe that the charged crime(s) was (were) committed and that Defendant committed the crime(s).  Due to this low burden of proof, Prosecutor generally does not call all witnesses to testify at the Preliminary Examination that he/she would call at a trial.  He/She calls just enough to satisfy this lower burden.  At the Preliminary Examination, Defendant, through his attorney, may cross-examine Prosecutor’s witnesses and present his/her own evidence (including witnesses).

If probable cause is established, Defendant is “bound over” (transferred) to Circuit Court on the charged crime(s) for further proceedings.  If probable cause is not established that Defendant committed the charged crime(s), Judge can bind the case over on different charges, can reduce the charges to misdemeanors for trial in District Court, or can dismiss the charges altogether.

Defendant always maintains the right to “waive” his/her right to a Preliminary Examination.  This is different than waiving one’s 14-day-rule.  If Defendant does waive his/her right to a Preliminary Examination, he/she would automatically be “bound over” to Circuit Court without any probable cause hearing.

Some of the other important purposes of a Preliminary Examination include setting the amount of bond Defendant will have to post if held for trial, the receipt of valuable evidence and information regarding the witnesses’ credibility, and the preservation of testimony in the event a witness disappears or dies prior to trial.

If you have been charged with a crime please contact Aida Spahic at  (248) 624- 5500 or at aida@ambroselawgroup.com.

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Filed under Aida Spahic, The Criminal Process

Michigan Considers Repeal of Driver’s Fees

Last week the Michigan House passed a four-bill package that will partially repeal portions of the state’s driver responsibility fee program that started in 2003.  This bill will pull back on some of the responsibility fees that come along with some traffic violations, but would leave the fees attached to drunk driving, reckless driving, and manslaughter.

It seems that our State Government is starting to adjust to our current economic status, but is this the right adjustment?  The state will lose more than $100 million per year if this new bill passes, but drivers will not have to decide between their license and paying their bills.

I understand that our state needs that $100 million and will probably look for that money in other areas.  Will we like how our State gets their funds?

On the other hand, I’ve also dealt with many clients that cannot afford to lose a license.  Most of them need money to get their license back, but cannot get to work without a license.  If they do not drive on a suspended license, they will lose their job and put themselves even father behind.

What do you think?

If you have a question about your driver’s license contact Aida Spahic at (248) 624-5500

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Driver's License

The Criminal Process: Pre-Exam Conference (For A Felony)

After Arraignment, felony cases are generally scheduled for a Pre-Exam Conference, several days prior to the Preliminary Examination.  Defendant has a right to a Preliminary Examination within 14 days of the Arraignment of a felony.  A Pre-Exam Conference is very similar to a misdemeanor Pre-Trial Conference.  It is a meeting between an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney and Defendant (or his/her attorney) to discuss whether the case will be resolved prior to the Preliminary Examination.  If an agreement is reached, in other words, if a Plea Bargain is reached, Defendant will take a plea, usually that day, and then be sentenced, usually at a later date, in either District Court or Circuit Court, depending on the circumstances.

To see a definition of a Plea Bargain and what it involves, please take a look at my previous post,“The Criminal Process:  Pre-Trial Conference (for a Misdemeanor)”

If you have any questions about the criminal process or your Pre-Exam Conference contact Aida at (248)- 624-5500 or email her at Aida@ambroselawgroup.com

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Filed under Aida Spahic, Felony Conviction, The Criminal Process