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New restrictions to Michigan’s graduated driver’s license (GDL) program for teen drivers are effective today. These restrictions are part of a continued effort to save lives and minimize distractions for teen drivers. The new law is supported by a University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute study, which showed greater restrictions were necessary to curb teen drivers’ involvement in crashes. Its aim is to strengthen the state’s existing graduated driver’s license program that was first introduced in 1996.

Researchers found that teens have a higher risk of auto accidents and are 2 1/2 times as likely as adults to be in a crash. The risks increase when teens have other passengers in the car, especially other teens, and when they drive at night or on weekends. The graduated system helps young drivers by limiting these high risk driving situations, increasing adult supervision and extending the educational requirements of the novice driver. The program gradually increases privileges as drivers advance through the system and ends when they turn 18.

After passing the driving skills test, a teen driver may be eligible for a Level 2 Intermediate License. Teen drivers must have completed Segment 1 and Segment 2 of Driver Education, be at least 16 years of age, and have verification that they have completed 50 hours or more on-the-road driving experience to receive a Michigan Level 2 Intermediate license.

Key provisions to Michigan’s new teen driver laws are:

· New teen drivers with a level 2 intermediate license will be restricted to having one passenger under 21 unless the passenger is a member of the driver’s immediate family, or the driver is traveling to/from school events.

· New teen drivers are prohibited from driving between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m., unless they are driving to or from work. The existing law allows teens to drive until midnight.

To learn more about the new law, click here.

Mark Bello has thirty-three years experience as a trial lawyer and twelve years as an underwriter and situational analyst in the lawsuit funding industry. He is the owner and founder of Lawsuit Financial Corporation which helps provide legal finance cash flow solutions and consulting when necessities of life litigation funding is needed by a plaintiff involved in pending, personal injury, litigation. Bello is a Justice Pac member of the American Association for Justice, Sustaining and Justice Pac member of the Michigan Association for Justice, Business Associate of the Florida, Tennessee, and Colorado Associations for Justice, a member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and the Injury Board.

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