Marijuana DUI laws in Michigan have significantly changed in favor of marijuana users. Before recreational marijuana became legal, driving while having any detectable amount of marijuana in a person’s body was a DUI, a drug misdemeanor. It didn’t matter whether the marijuana affected the driving or made someone impaired.
Active THC can stay in a person’s body as long as seven days. Therefore, most chronic marijuana users were guilty of an OWI (Michigan’s term for DUI) misdemeanor every time they drove. If pulled over and a police officer had a reasonable suspicion the driver recently consumed marijuana, they would’ve been arrested and had their blood drawn and tested.
In 2013, this law changed but only with respect to medical marijuana patients. Because the Michigan medical marijuana act protected patients from internal possession of marijuana, it permitted them to use the MMMA as a defense, thereby eliminating the “any amount” rule.
But now that Michigan has legalized recreational adult-use marijuana, the “any amount” rule applies to all adults, not just medical marijuana patients. As such, the police and prosecutors must prove a driver was “under the influence of marijuana” to be guilty of a marijuana DUI.
Barton Morris was the only criminal defense attorney who presented to the commission along with other experts like Marilyn Huestis, who’s widely considered to be the foremost expert. In a report released in March of 2019, the commission found that a single concentration cannot reliably be used as per se evidence of intoxication. This report will likely preclude the Michigan Legislature from adopting any nanogram concentration level like other states have done.
Why Our Lawyers Are the Best in Michigan For DUI Marijuana Cases
Barton Morris is widely known as the best marijuana DUI/OWI criminal defense lawyer in the State of Michigan. He has written articles for the State Bar of Michigan Marijuana Law Section Journal on the subject. He wrote the position paper for the State Bar of Michigan Marijuana Law section on the subject for the Michigan Legislature. Barton has also testified before the House Judiciary Committee on cannabis impaired driving.
He presented to the Impaired Driving Safety Commission on the subject, who later adopted his findings in its report (acknowledging Barton Morris as a contributor), and has presented on the subject numerous times over the years including for the Institute of Continuing Legal Education (ICLE), the State Bar of Michigan Marijuana Law Section Annual Conference in 2017, 2018 and 2019, and presented at the Annual Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys (MIAOWIA, an organization for which he is currently President) every year since 2016.
Barton Morris has also been so successful in defending these cases that almost every prosecutor knows who he is and respects his knowledge. He’s also the only criminal defense attorney to have presented to the Michigan State Police Forensic Science and Toxicology Department (the unit that tests all of the blood for drugs and alcohol for DUI cases) at their annual seminar. Additionally, Barton Morris is the only attorney in the State of Michigan that has been certified by the American Chemical Society as a Forensic Lawyer-Scientist.
Every criminal defense attorney in our firm is trained by Barton. So, too, are our paralegals and other support staff. They take the same courses as Barton. Barton also consults on cases. When you hire The Law Offices of Barton Morris, you hire a team of the best trained attorneys, paralegals and support staff in Michigan.
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