Updated April 29, 2019.
Michigan Cell Phone Laws
Michigan cell phone laws aren’t as strict as other states since only teens with level 1 and level 2 learner’s permits are restricted from talking on the phone while driving. As an adult if you are in an accident or violate a traffic law while talking on your cell phone you can be charged with careless driving, so it’s still safer to not talk on the phone while driving.
Michigan does not allow texting while driving and under Michigan’s anti-texting laws drivers will not “read, manually type, or send a text message on a wireless 2-way communication device that is located in the person’s hand or in the person’s lap, including a wireless telephone used in cellular telephone service or personal communication service, while operating a motor vehicle that is moving on the highway or street in this state.”
Exceptions to Michigan Cell Phone Laws:
- If you are a law enforcement official, member of the fire department or operator of an emergency vehicle and are carrying out official duties.
- If you are reporting a traffic accident, medical emergency or serious road hazard.
- Reporting a situation where you believe you are in danger.
- Reporting a criminal activity.
Please remember while Michigan does allow exceptions for their texting laws in situations where you need to contact 911 make sure to call 911 and not text them. None of the 911 call centers in Michigan have the capability to accept text messages.
Detroit, Michigan Cell Phone Laws
Some cities in the state have chosen to prohibit handheld cell phone use while driving and Detroit is one such location. Locations that have local ordinances will have signs at their boundaries to alert drivers.
Violating Michigan Cell Phone Laws
A police officer is allowed to pull you over if they see you breaking Michigan cell phone laws, but no other traffic laws. For your first ticket the fine is $100 and $200 for offenses after that.
Recent Developments to Michigan Cell Phone Laws
February 2019 the House of Representatives introduced three bills (HB 4181, 4198–4199) that would only allow hands-free calling and texting, as well as increasing penalties/fines for people who text or post on social media while driving. Penalties could increase from $100 to $250 for the first offense and up to $500 for a second offense.
“You can’t navigate any road if you’re looking at your phone,” she said, introducing the family of Mitchel Kiefer, an MSU freshman who was killed by a distracted driver in 2016. “I believe it’s time for Michigan to join the 16 states that have passed hands-free laws to keep our roads and our kids safe.” said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer – Detroit Free Press
At Top Driver Driving School we’ll teach your teen driver the importance of safe driving habits and the dangers of distracted driving. To find one of our convenient locations take a look at our schedule.