What do The Different ‘Tiers’ Mean in Michigan’s Sex Offender Registry?

The Michigan Sex Offender Registry divides convicted offenders into three categories called tiers.


If you’ve ever looked at the Michigan Sex Offender Registry online, or researched someone who is listed as a sex offender, you probably noticed the ‘tier’ classification system we use. For people who aren’t familiar with the system, this can be a little confusing. So let’s take a look at what it means, and why we use this system for classifying sex offenders.


Why does Michigan divide convicted sex offenders into ‘tiers’?


In 2006, President George W. Bush signed the Adam Walsh Act into law. This set the standard for how law enforcement classifies sexual offenses. Under the federal Adam Walsh Act, sexual offenses are classified based on the crime committed, the nature of the crime, the age of the people involved, and whether or not the convicted sex offender is likely to commit the same type of offense again.


Under this new federal law, states were encouraged to do likewise, altering their sex offender registries to reflect their categories. In Michigan, we divide convicted sex offenders into three ‘tiers’ based on the crime they had committed, and how long they were required to remain on the registry.


What are the different tiers in Michigan?


Part of what makes the system confusing to some people is that ‘tier 1’ is sometimes assumed to be the worst offenders. This isn’t true. The system is actually the other way around, with the more minor offenses being labelled as ‘tier 1’ and the most serious offenses falling into ‘tier 3’. Here is a breakdown of which crimes fall into the three tiers: (please note that this list is an overview, and isn’t exhaustive!)


Tier One Offenses:


Tier Two Offenses:


Tier Three Offenses:


Different tiers require different registration periods


Convicted sex offenders in Michigan are required to register their addresses with the Michigan State Police a certain number of times, during specific times of the year. They are also required to stay on the sex offender registry for different periods of time, based on their assigned tiers.


Tier I: Must verify their residence and other information in-person once a year for 15 years.

Tier II: Must verify their residence and other information in-person twice a year for 25 years.

Tier III: Must verify their residence and other information in-person four times a year for the rest of their lives.


Being a registered sex offender in Michigan is life changing!


Being a registered sex offender will have a direct impact on every part of your life, regardless of which tier you’re at. While people assigned to tier 3 are likely to draw more concern from neighbors and community members than those at tier 1, the reality is that simply being a registered sex offender is bad enough!

If you or a loved one have been accused of a sex crime in Michigan, you’re going to need the help of an aggressive and experienced sex crime defense attorneys. Call The Kronzek Firm at 866 766 5245 (866 7No Jail) and discuss your case with one of our respected sex crime defense attorneys. Over the decades we’ve helped many people who’ve been able to avoid conviction, and continue to live their lives uninterrupted! Remember that the right attorney is critical.


Comments are closed.


Contact A Sex Crime Attorney

call us
email us