Written by attorney Rhidian David Watson Orr

Early Removal of Ignition Interlock in Colorado

Early removal of ignition interlock is only for first time offenders with a BAC below .170. Here is how the process works, according to the interlock department at the CO DMV: • Respondent gets credit for interlock from the date the license is reinstated, not the date interlock is installed • Tell respondent to get download done a couple days after the 4 consecutive months have passed • Downloads go from service center to Interlock headquarters • Records are reviewed and if client meets the 120 early removal terms (no tampering, no excess BAC which is .025) then interlock company sends separate letter (via fax) to CO DMV indicating client has met the terms for early removal. The respondent must call the interlock company to make sure that they review the record and send the compliance letter to the CO DMV. The interlock company has no incentive in having the device removed early, they actually lose money, so make sure you call them and ensure that the letter of compliance has been sent to the CO DMV. • The letter and early term approval gets entered into the computer and each Wednesday at midnight, the computer system recognizes all people who have qualified for early removal and a letter is generated. • By late Friday of that week, letter is mailed to client indicating they may come down to DMV to get an unrestricted license. • Once client has unrestricted license in hand, they then can get interlock removed. • So the reality is that clients can expect this process to take another 2-3 weeks minimum to actually get the unrestricted license and to have the interlock out of their vehicles. • I have found that having clients pester the interlock companies to send the early term letter and getting confirmation that it has been sent usually helps the process. At the end of the day, they still have to remember that they are relying on two entities that have no real incentive to do this, so no one is in a rush to process this and ensure that the client doesn’t have to have interlock for another week or two. • Interlock company loses money when people qualify for early removal • And DMV thinks interlock should be in every vehicle for everyone and if they had it there way it would be required to be in every vehicle on the road. Remember that you don't get credit for interlock until your license is reinstated and that you need to get a download done 4 months after that to expedite the process (use the date of issue on your interlock restricted license as day one - so if that date is May 5th, then on Septemeber 6th you should have your final download done begin the process outlined above). If you pester the Interlock company to send the early term letter, this will help expedite the process, but realistically you are looking at at least 2 more weeks or longer after the 4 month download before you can expect to get the early removal letter. You then need to take the letter into the DMV and get the unrestricted license. Only after you have obained an unrestricted license can you then get interlock removed.

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