Ignition Interlock Requirements

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Some DUI convictions will require the installation of an Ignition Interlock Device (IID). An IID is a breathalyzer hooked into a person’s vehicle. Before starting an IID-fitted car, an individual must blow into a mouthpiece on the device. If their blood alcohol content (BAC) is below the acceptable level, the engine will turn on. The technology was originally designed to prevent inebriated people from driving.

Who Needs to Install Them and for How Long?

Typically, it’s up to the court to decide which individuals might need the device installed in a vehicle. Not all people convicted of DUIs will be forced to use one. A 1st-time conviction, for example, will not usually require an IID, though a judge may order it. However, if a person’s 1st DUI included a BAC of 0.15% or above, or they were driving with a minor, he or she will have to install one for at least 6 months. Additional charges will require an IID, but the amount of time for each conviction varies:

  • 2nd—at least 1 year
  • 2nd with BAC 0.15% or more—at least 2 years
  • 2nd with a minor in the car—at least 2 years
  • 3rd—at least 2 years
  • 4th or more—at least 5 years

Who Pays for IID?

The convicted person will usually have to pay for IID installation. The initial cost for setting it up is about $70 with an additional $100 refundable deposit. Also, the IID will need constant tuning. Anyone whose car has an installed IID will have to pay a $67.50 monthly monitoring and calibration fee. An uncalibrated IID will give false readings, which means it may detect ethanol levels when the driver hasn’t been drinking at all. If the prices are unaffordable, the court might order that a portion of your fine be used to cover the costs of the installation.

Basic Specifications

The IID has to be of a particular nature. It must use fuel-cell technology, and it has to be capable of preventing the car from starting if the BAC reads more than 0.025%. Additionally, the device needs the ability to perform a rolling retest. A rolling retest is when the device will ask randomly for a breath sample from the driver while the vehicle is still moving. This ensures the driver can’t ask a friend to breathe into the mouthpiece and drive alone for the rest of the trip. The IID must also be able to collect data through web-based reporting with access 24/7 and be able to record and store visual evidence of the driver using the device. The court will look at this evidence later to ensure the driver has cooperated with the IID penalty.

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