Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers Explain
Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees
Our lawyers have been handling traffic tickets in the Detroit area since 1997. We pride ourselves on fighting aggressively for every client. And we always offer a FREE consultations to help you understand your options and the best way to handle your Detroit traffic ticket. However, one of the most difficult, confusing, and genuinely unfair aspects of Michigan traffic ticket law is the Secretary of State “Driver Responsibility Fees.”
In this two part article, we will try to help you understand when Driver Responsibility fees are assessed, how much they cost and what you can do about them.
What are Driver Responsibility Fees?
Driver Responsibility Fees have been in place since Oct. 1, 2003. They are separate fines added on top of your ticket fine. The ticket fine goes to the District Court where you were convicted of a traffic violation. The Driver Responsibility Fees go to the State.
The purpose of these fees is supposedly to “to encourage traffic safety by deterring potentially dangerous driving behavior.” But our lawyers believe that the end result simply makes it harder for people with less money to keep or restore their driver’s’ license.
How Much are Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees?
Here’s where it gets really tricky! We have even met other lawyers who don’t understand the complicated “formula” for calculating Driver Responsibility Fees.
There are two ways to get Driver Responsibility Fees in Michigan: “category 1 offenses” which is somewhat less expensive; and “category 2 offenses” which is quite exorbitant.
Category (1) Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees
Many lesser traffic tickets count toward category 1 points, including: careless driving, speeding, improper turn, following to close, disobeyed traffic control device, failed to yield, failed to signal or observe, unauthorized or improper use of lights, prohibited turn, drove wrong way on one-way street, driving left of center.
Category 1 imposes a $100 assessment for persons reaching 7 points, and $50 for each additional qualifying point above 7.
So, for example, if you have 10 points your Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees, you will be assessed $250.
Category (2) Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees
Category 2 offenses are a special set of separate traffic ticket convictions that do not count toward your Category 1 total points.
How much your Category 2 fee will be depends upon will depend on what traffic ticket offense you are convicted of. Category 2 offenses range from $150 per year for two years all the way up to $1,000 for two years!
Category 2 Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees:
$1,000 per year for two years
$500 per year for two years
$200 per year for two years (certain tickets between May 1, 2004 & Oct. 1, 2012)
$150 per year for two years (certain tickets between between Oct. 1, 2003 and Oct. 1, 2012)
CLICK HERE for a Full List of Category 2 Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees
CLICK HERE for Part 2 of Detroit Lawyers Explain Driver Responsibility Fees.
Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers
Our experienced Detroit traffic ticket lawyers will offer you a free consultation – to help you understand what your traffic ticket means for you, and to explain the best way to handle it in your situation. We will fight aggressively to help you avoid points that will result in increased insurance, license suspensions & large driver responsibility fees.