Friends don’t let friends

Do you plan on serving alcoholic beverages the next time you host a social gathering at your home? If the answer is yes, you should learn about the law regarding “social host liability”.

Social host liability is a legal theory used to describe the responsibility of an individual who provides alcohol to guests. While several other states have laws regarding social host liability, Michigan does not. What this really means, is that party hosts who supply alcohol to their guests, are NOT responsible for the damage those guests cause while intoxicated.

However, there is one key exception – Minors. Under Michigan law, MCL 436.1701, alcohol shall not be provided to any person under the age of 21 years old. So, if you host a social gathering or party at your home and provide alcohol to a minor, you could be responsible for the damage that minor causes while intoxicated, including a drunk driving accident.

When planning and hosting your next social gathering, please keep these tips in mind:

• Planning the party:

  • Encourage guests to volunteer as designated drivers
  • Limit your own alcohol intake so you can drive guests home if needed
  • Purchase and have non-alcoholic beverages available
  • Provide cab company phone numbers and have extra cash for cab fare on hand
  • Determine and announce a party time ending well in advance

• Serving Drinks:

  • DO NOT serve alcohol to Minors
  • Encourage and push food, not alcohol
  • Limit the number of drinks per guest
  • Serve water, coffee, tea and other non-alcoholic beverages
  • Stop serving alcohol at least one hour before the party ends

A responsible social host not only takes care of guests’ needs, but also helps keep everyone safe!

Expunging (Setting Aside) a Conviction from your Criminal Record in Michigan

Due to the rapid growth of employers, landlords, and banks conducting background checks on perspective new hires, renters, and loan applicants, expunging, or setting aside, a criminal conviction from your public record might be a process you want to consider.

While the Michigan laws (see MCL Section 780.621) for expunging a criminal conviction are detailed and potentially confusing, the following questions and answers are written to help you better understand the process:

Question 1: When can I begin the Expungement process?

Answer: Before filing an application to set aside your conviction, five years must have passed since a sentenced was imposed or your discharge from imprisonment, probation, or parole for this conviction, which is later.

Question 2: What convictions qualify for an Expungement?


You would qualify if you met any of the following:

  1. You have not been convicted of more than 1 felony and 2 misdemeanors.
    1. May petition the court to set aside the 1 felony offense.
  2. You have not been convicted of more than 2 misdemeanors and no other felonies or misdemeanors.
    1. May petition the court to set aside 1 or both of the misdemeanor offenses.
  3. You were convicted of a violation or attempted violation of MCL 750.520e (criminal sexual conduct 4th degree) before January 12, 2015, IF you have not been convicted of any other offense.
    1. Exception to “any other offense: not more than 2 minor offenses. A minor offense is a misdemeanor of ordinance violation that ALL of the following apply:
      1. The maximum imprisonment term is not more than 90 days;
      2. The maximum fine is not more than $1000; and
  • The person committing the offense is not more than 21 years old.

You would NOT qualify if the following occurred:

  1. You committed a felony or attempted to commit a felony for which the maximum punishment is life imprisonment;
  2. You violated or attempted to violate of any of the following:
    1. Child abuse- 2nd degree (MCL 750.136b(3));
    2. Child abuse- in presence of another child (MCL 750.136d);
    3. Child sexually abusive activity or possession of child sexually abusive material(MCL 750.145c);
    4. Prohibited use of Internet or computer system (MCL 750.145d);
    5. Criminal Sexual Conduct- 2nd and 3rd degrees (MCL 750.520c/750.520d);
    6. Assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct (MCL 750.520g);
  3. You were convicted of a violation or attempted violation of MCL 750.520e (criminal sexual conduct 4th degree) before January 12, 2015;
  4. You were convicted of a traffic offense, including a conviction for operating while intoxicated;
  5. You were convicted of a felony for domestic violence, if the person has a previous misdemeanor conviction for domestic violence;
  6. You violated the Human Trafficking laws (MCL 750.462a to 750.462j);
  7. You violated the Anti- Terrorism Act (MCL 750.543a to 750.543z).

Question 3: Is there a cost?

Answer: Yes, the application fee is $50.00.  There may be other fees associated with having your fingerprints taken, making copies of the application and attachments and mailing your application packet to multiple agencies.

Question 4: How do I begin the Expungement Process?

Answer: In order to set aside your conviction, you will need to do the following:

  1. Determine if you are eligible (See Questions 1 and 2)
  2. Complete the “Application to set aside Conviction
  3. Go to the convicting court:
    1. Sign the application in the presence of the court clerk
    2. Get a certified copy of the conviction
    3. Make 4 copies of the application and all attachments
    4. Submit the Original application and all attachments to the court clerk
  4. Go to a local law enforcement agency:
    1. Have your fingerprints taken (possible fee)
    2. Get a fingerprint card
  5. Mail to the Michigan State Police:
    1. 1 copy of the application and all attachments
    2. Fingerprint card
    3. Fee: $50.00
  6. Mail to the Attorney General
    1. 1 copy of the application and all attachments
  7. Mail to the correct Prosecuting Office (county, city, or township):
    1. 1 copy of the application and all attachments
  8. Complete and sign the Proof of Service on the back of the application
    1. submit proof of service to the convicting court

Question 5: Where can I find the required forms?

Answer: The Application to Set Aside Conviction and Order on to Set Aside Conviction can be found at the Michigan State Court Administrator’s Office Website (SCAO). Be sure to review the forms to see what exactly needs to be completed.

Tobacco and Smoking


One simple law: It is illegal to purchase or use tobacco products if you are under 18 years old!

Michigan’s Smoke Free Law

  • What:
    • A law prohibiting smoking in the state of Michigan.
  • When:
    • Effective as of May 1, 2010
  • Where:
    • Required to comply with smoke free laws:
      • Work areas/places of employment
      • Food service establishments
        • Bars
        • Restaurants
      • Any public place including
        • Arenas
        • Bowling Alleys
        • Concert Halls
        • Health Facilities
        • Health Facilities
        • Hotels & Motels
        • Museums
        • Nursing Homes
      • Private clubs
        • VFW halls
      • Not required to comply with smoke free laws:
        • Cigar Bars
        • Tobacco specialty retail stores
        • Casino gaming floors
        • Hookah bars (only if no food service or liquor license)
        • Personal residences
        • Motor Vehicles
      • Why:
        • Michigan legislature passed the Dr. Ron Davis Smoke-Free Air Law on December 10, 2009 to preserve and improve the health, comfort, and environment of the people of the state by limiting exposure to secondhand smoke.

Teen Drivers

Teen Driver’s and Parents

*Credit to Michigan SOS Website for Information


If you are under 18 years, here is how the Michigan Graduated Driver’s License System works:


Important Driving Information:


  1. Kelsey’s Law: Mobile phones banned for Level 1 and Level 2 Driver’s

Under state law, you are prohibited from initiating a call, answering a call, or listening to or engaging in verbal communication through a mobile phone. If ticketed, you could receive up to $295 in fines and costs. Exceptions are if you are using a voice-operated system or a phone to:

  • Report a traffic accident, medical emergency or serious road hazard.
  • Report a situation in which you believe your personal safety is in jeopardy.
  • Report or prevent a crime or potential crime against yourself or another person.
  1. Speed Limits

The standard speed limits defined under the Michigan Vehicle Code are as follows:

  • 15 mph- mobile home parks and some municipal parks
  • 25 mph- subdivisions and condominium complexes
  • 45 mph- In a work zone if posted. If a work zone is not posted for 45 mph, then the speed limit is the normal speed limit for that area.
  • 55 mph- Unless otherwise posted, on all streets that are not designated freeways and on all highways
  • 70 mph maximum/55 mph minimum – On all freeways unless posted otherwise. School buses and trucks are restricted to 60 mph. On freeways with speed limits less than 70 mph, school buses and trucks are restricted to 55 mph.


  1. Driving Record– maintained by the Secretary or State for EVERY driver in Michigan and contains
  • Moving Violations- reported by law enforcement
  • Traffic accidents- reported by law enforcement
    • Michigan
    • Other States- notify Michigan SOS
  • Alcohol convictions- reported through court system
  • Drug convictions- reported through court system
  • Suspended License statuses