People drinking in car

Open Container Laws in Michigan

Open Container Law

Michigan's open container laws state that an operator of a motor vehicle shall not transport or possess in the passenger area of the vehicle alcohol in a container that is open, uncapped, or had the seal broken. This law means that transporting opened wine, a bottle of liquor, or another open alcoholic container could result in criminal charges for a driver.

Surprisingly, this law applies to more than the operator of a motor vehicle. Passengers who are drinking or holding open containers of alcohol can be charged under Michigan’s open container laws. Therefore, no one should possess open containers of alcohol while in a vehicle.

Exceptions to the Rule

Drivers can haul open containers of alcohol in certain areas of their vehicles.

Places you can store open alcoholic beverages include:

  • Trunks; or
  • Compartments separate from passenger areas;
  • Locked glove departments, behind last upright seats, or areas not normally occupied by passengers (if a vehicle doesn’t have a trunk or separate compartment.

Passengers in certain vehicles can possess open containers of alcohol.

Vehicle exceptions include:

  • Commercial quadricycles;
  • Vehicles outlined in The Motor Bus Transportation Act.

Have You Been Accused?

If you or a loved one has been accused of breaking open container laws in Michigan, you have the right to hire experienced criminal defense for your case. White Law is an award-winning criminal defense firm that can defend your freedoms.

Call (517) 316-1195 now for a free consultation with White Law.

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