In Michigan, a third OWI (operating while intoxicated) or OWVI (operating while visibly intoxicated) conviction within seven years of when the first offense occurred will likely result in fines, jail time, and driver’s license revocation. (Read about the differences between an OWI and OWVI in our first-offense OWI article.) The ranges of possible penalties are explained below. However, the specific consequences of an OWI or OWVI always depend on the circumstances of the case.
For most purposes, an OWI or OWVI is considered a third offense if the driver has two prior intoxicated driving convictions that occurred within the past seven years.
Jail time. A third-offense OWI or OWVI is a felony, and the judge can order one to five years imprisonment. Alternatively, the judge can order probation. A probation sentence must include 30 days to one year in jail with 60 to 180 days of community service.
Fines. A third OWI or OWVI carries a fine of $500 to $5,000.
Vehicle loss. An OWI or OWVI can lead to vehicle forfeiture. And if the driver’s vehicle isn’t forfeited, the judge will order that the driver’s vehicle be immobilized for one to three years.
Revocation. A third OWI or OWVI conviction within ten years will result in a five-year license revocation. However, after 45 days of the revocation, the driver can apply for a restricted license for limited driving privileges using an ignition interlock device (IID). But for convictions involving illegal drugs, a restricted license isn’t available.