Written by attorney Denis Hurley White Jr

Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in PLAIN LANGUAGE

If you live in one of the Pilot Counties of Sacramento, Alameda, Tulare or Los Angeles and you suffer a conviction for a DUI on or after July 1, 2010, you must put an IID on any vehicles you own or operate in order to get your CA driver’s license back. Since you pay monthly to have the device on a vehicle, the cost will vary depending on how long you must keep it on the vehicle. The average monthly cost is $75.00. A couple of examples of the length of time you will have to keep the device on your vehicle are, 5 months for a first offense and 1 year for a second offense. If you are subject to this law, once you get the license, you can drive anywhere and at any time. People in non-pilot counties are not being ordered to place the device on their vehicles but they also don’t get to drive anywhere at any time. They are subject to the normal restricted license that only allows them to drive to work and the DUI school and don’t even have the option of placing the IID on their vehicle to take advantage of the non-restricted driving privilege. If you only driver an employer’s vehicle, you may qualify for an exemption and currently there is no IID that can be fitted for motorcycles, so there is no way to ride one until you qualify to get your regular license back.

Another state wide change affecting people with prior DUIs, within 10 years of a prior conviction, is the ability to get a license back much sooner and with no real driving restrictions other than having the IID. In order for you to qualify though, you can’t be on probation for the prior DUI when you are arrested for the new DUI. So, for example, if you had one prior DUI within 10 years of a new arrest for DUI, you could elect to put the IID on your vehicle and get a license back after only 90 days.

Obviously this is an overview of the more detailed laws covering the IID. Judges still have the ability to order you to place the IID on your vehicle rather than wait for DMV to do so. The IID can and is ordered for other reasons such as driving on a suspended license following a DUI conviction. For specific questions, please feel free to give us a call at (916) 444-3300.

*The most recent study of this pilot program was inconclusive on the issue of preventing recidivism.

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