Lake County Sheriff’s Corner: Random Michigan Laws

A big change in expungements will again take place in April 2023. Having to “personally” remove a past criminal offense from your record will no longer be the case under certain circumstances. An automated system for erasing convictions without the need to file a request will be put in place.

  • Up to two felony convictions will automatically be expunged no later than 10 years after the person’s conviction or release.
  • Up to four misdemeanors will automatically be expunged seven years after conviction.

The following convictions are not eligible for automatic expungement:

  • Convictions for “assaults”.
  • Convictions for “serious offences”.
  • Convictions for offenses punishable by 10 years or more of imprisonment.
  • Convictions involving a minor, a vulnerable adult, serious injury or impairment of a person, death of a person.
  • Convictions related to human trafficking.
  • A crime for which the maximum penalty is life imprisonment or an attempt to commit a crime for which the maximum penalty is life imprisonment.
  • Any traffic offense causing injury or death.
  • A conviction for a crime of domestic violence, if the person has a previous conviction for a crime of domestic violence.

…as well as many others.

A good resource to help you with your write-offs is to visit your local Michigan Works office. This is conducted as part of the “Clean Slate Program”. With Michigan’s Clean Slate program, you may be eligible to remove misdemeanors and felonies from your record:

  • Up to three crimes.
  • Unlimited offenses.
  • Most traffic violations.
  • Marijuana offense convictions.

In all cases, they must respect waiting periods. Some convictions are not eligible for expungement and waiting times vary. Michigan Works staff can help determine potential eligibility on a case-by-case basis.

In this edition of “Sheriff’s Corner”, I give you Random Laws, Volume V.

MCL 445.571: Beverages and beverages set

“Beverage” means a carbonated drink, carbonated water, natural or mineral sparkling water or other non-alcoholic carbonated drink; beer, ale or other malt beverage regardless of alcohol content; or a mixed wine drink or a mixed spirit drink.

“Beverage Container” means an airtight metal, glass, paper or plastic container, or a container made of a combination of these materials, which, at the time of sale, holds 1 gallon or less of a beverage .

“Mixed wine drink” means a drink or similar product marketed as a wine cooler and containing less than 7% alcohol by volume, consisting of wine and still, sparkling or carbonated water and containing one or more of the following elements:

  • Soft drink.
  • Aroma.
  • Coloring materials.
  • Juice.
  • Fruit supplements.
  • Sugar.
  • Carbon dioxide.
  • Conservatives.

“mixed spirit drink” means a drink containing 10% or less alcohol by volume, consisting of distilled spirits mixed with non-alcoholic beverages or with flavorings or colorings and which may also contain water, fruit juices, fruit additives, sugar, carbon dioxide or preservatives; or any spirit-based beverage, regardless of percentage alcohol by volume, that is manufactured for sale in a metal container.

MCL 445.903c: Wrong location listing in phone book

A person shall not advertise or cause to be listed in a telephone directory any purported or fictitious business name that intentionally misrepresents where the business is actually located or operates or falsely states that the business is located or operates in the same covered area through the telephone directory.

… A person who violates this article is liable to a civil fine of at least $100.00 or more than $10,000.00.

MCL 445.903e: Validity of gift vouchers issued

A person engaged in the retail sale of goods or services must not do any of the following in relation to a gift certificate issued for retail goods or services:

… Refuse to accept a gift certificate as payment for goods or services used or purchased for use primarily for personal, family, or household purposes, including, but not limited to, goods or services advertised for sale or following liquidation or liquidation. This subsection does not apply if the Gift Certificate has an expiration date that does not violate Section 3g and is presented for redemption after that expiration date.

MCL 257.1807: School Bus Definition

“School Bus” means a motor vehicle with a rated capacity of 11 or more passengers, including the driver, used for transporting pre-school, primary or secondary school pupils to or from school or school-related events at school or a school activity….

School bus does not include a vehicle operated by a transit agency or authority. A vehicle that is not a school bus is not subject to this law. For the purposes of this Act, a parent or legal guardian transporting their child or another child with the written permission of the parent or legal guardian of the other child at a school-related event is not subject to this law.

MCL 567.226: Period of validity of a check or draft

Any sum payable on a cheque, draft or similar instrument[…]for which a banking or financial institution is directly responsible, including a cashier’s check and a certified cheque, which is unpaid for more than three years after it was payable or after its issue, if it is payable on sight, is presumed to have been abandoned, unless the holder, within a period of three years, has communicated in writing with the banking or financial organization about it or has otherwise expressed an interest materialized by a note or other document in the file drawn up by an employee of the banking or financial institution.

MCL 567.237: Goods held in a safe deposit box or deposit

Any property held in a safe deposit box or other security deposit in this state in the ordinary course of the holder’s business and proceeds resulting from the sale of the property authorized by law, which remains unclaimed by the owner for more than three years after the the lease or the rental period on the box or other repository has expired, are presumed abandoned.

MCL 257.256: Bad plate on a motor vehicle

No person shall lend to another person or knowingly permit the use of any certificate of title, certificate of registration, license plate, special plate or a license issued to him if the person receiving or using the certificate of title, certificate of registration, number plate, special plate or permit would not have the right to use it. No person shall carry or display on a vehicle any registration certificate or number plate which has not been issued for the vehicle or which is not otherwise lawfully used under this Act.

… Except as otherwise provided in this section, a person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor, liable to imprisonment for not more than 90 days or to a fine not exceeding $100.00, or both.

— This information is provided to you for clarification of specific laws, not for legal advice. This should not be construed as a personal opinion, agreement or disagreement on any specific law. The topics covered are for educational and informational purposes only. Where appropriate, excerpts from other articles are used for reference and/or content. If you have questions about a specific topic, you can always email your questions to me at

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