Don't Blow It: Ignition Interlock Devices And Your DUI

If you've been charged with driving under the influence (DUI) then you are facing a number of potential punishments. Even first-timers can look forward to things like probation, classes, rehab, fees, and a massive clamp down on your driving privileges. One way to continue to drive after a DUI is to agree to an ignition interlock device. Read on to find out more about this way of curbing the use of alcohol while behind the wheel.

How These Devices Work

You probably had your blood alcohol tested using a breathalyzer device. There are portable breathalyzers used at roadside stops and then there are more extensive testing performed at the police station. How would you like to have a breathalyzer attached to your car? That is exactly what an ignition interlock device is. The device is connected to your ignition and you must blow into it before your car will start. If the device detects alcohol on your expelled breath, not only will your car not start but your probation officer may be alerted.

Getting Around With an Ignition Interlock Device

While many consider this device inconvenient and annoying, consider what happens to those that are not given the privilege of using an ignition interlock device. In many cases, DUI arrests result in the loss of your regular driver's license. If you are lucky and have a good criminal defense lawyer on your case, you might be granted a restricted or "hardship" driver's license to be used only during certain times. Some DUI defendants lose their driving privileges altogether if they have previous DUI convictions. When you realize that you might not be able to work, go to the grocery store, or take your kids to the doctor without a license, you might see the ignition interlock device differently.

What to Expect in Terms of Cost

A DUI is going to cost you a lot of money – even if you are not convicted. Every aspect of a DUI is connected to a financial outlay and you can expect to spend a large sum of money for an ignition interlock device as well. While your exact costs may vary, take a look at some common charges to expect:

  • $100 and up to have the device installed on your car
  • A monthly fee of about $50 and up so that the device can be monitored
  • $50-100 to have the device removed at the end of the sentence

You may never have to deal with an ignition interlock device if your charges are dropped. Speak to a DUI attorney about your defense today.