New year means new laws in Michigan

Posted at 8:39 AM, Jan 05, 2016

It's a brand new year, which means new laws in Michigan are taking effect, including one today involving your car insurance.

Drivers no longer need to keep a paper copy of their insurance in their glove box.

If you get pulled over, you can just pull up your proof of insurance on your phone, or tablet. That new law goes into effect today.

The legislation was signed into law by Governor Snyder back in October. He says the goal is to make life easier for Michigan residents and to modernize government.

Police will not be able to look at anything else on your phone, just the copy of insurance. Drivers will have to forward an electronic copy of the proof of insurance so that the officer can verify it.

Before the new law, those stopped with no proof of insurance were given a ticket that was usually waived when they showed up to court with proof.

Two more laws go into effect on January 18th.

One protects those who use service animals. The animals or the person with the service animal will not be denied entry to an establishment.

Service dogs are also exempt from licensing fees.

Veterans can now have one to help with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

The second law which takes effect on the 18th deals with how law enforcement can seize property. Law enforcement agencies must have a higher standard of evidence before they can seize property.

Later this month, the ban to stop sales or use of powdered alcohol will take effect on the 26th.

The federal government approved sales of powdered alcohol last year, but critics say people could drink way too much. They also say drinks could easily be spiked.

Michigan isn't alone in banning powdered alcohol. States including Alaska, Louisiana, South Carolina and Vermont have all done so.