In Georgia, if you are a first time DUI offender you are given the option of whether or not you install the ignition interlock device in your vehicle. It is with your second offense that you will be required to obtain one after your license privileges have been fully reinstated.
What is an Ignition Interlock Device?
An ignition interlock device is a device that is installed in your car to measure your blood alcohol content. Think of it as a mini-breathalyzer test that determines if your car is going to start or not.
These devices have become more sophisticated over the years. They now include cameras that take a picture of the person blowing into the device which is sent to the monitoring company for verification. They are also outfitted with GPS capability for monitoring purposes of a limited driving permit.
What Is A Limited Driving Permit?
A limited driving permit in the state of Georgia is a driving permit that is issued to those who have been convicted of a DUI. These permits are temporary and are generally only good for 120 days from the date they are issued.
After being arrested for a DUI the window of opportunity for obtaining one of these limited driving permits is very small. The officer is going to issue a 10-day permit once he has taken your operator’s license.
You have the option with your first DUI offense of not appealing the ALS hearing for your license and automatically having the interlock device installed in your car. If you do choose to do this, the interlock device must be used for the full 12 month period. You are not at risk of losing your driving privileges this way.
This is when it is important to contact an Athens, GA DUI lawyer immediately. They can help you obtain this limited driving permit or make the decision to install the ignition interlock device.
If it is your second DUI offense, there is not a limited driving permit. Once you are eligible for full restoration of your license, that is when the ignition interlock device can be installed. For a period of 6 to 12 months after the reinstatement is the interlock period.
How Much Does an Ignition Interlock Device Cost?
There are costs for getting the ignition interlock device installed in your car. These can range depending on the manufacturer of the device and where you have it installed.
The installation of the device can range from $100 to $200. This installation has to be performed by a certified mechanic or by an ignition interlock device company.
There are monthly fees associated with the ignition interlock device as well. These can range from $60 to $80 a month. This is because of the real-time monitoring and reporting capabilities.
There are also going to be device maintenance fees, and these vary based on the servicing needed. Most ignition interlock devices have to be serviced every set number of days to ensure accuracy.
After your time is done using the ignition interlock device there is a fee to remove the device as well. This cost around $250.
These fees are on top of what the courts are going to charge you as well. In each DUI conviction, there are a number of fees that you must pay. These only get larger with the number of offenses you accrue.
Getting the initial ignition interlock device requires that an application is filled out and returned.
Violations While Using the Ignition Interlock Device
If you have reached the point where you have the ignition interlock device on your car, this means that you are so close to a fully reinstated license.
Yes, right now it seems like it will take forever when you can only drive to specified places and you have to breathe into a tube to get there.
Think of this as “car probation”.
Don’t mess it up. Some of the ramifications for tampering with or trying to evade using the ignition interlock system can get you a suspended license for up to 10 years.
Some of the most commonly reported violations with the ignition interlock system are physical tampering with the device, missing service appointments, and failing the actual interlock test.
If you do not pass the test the first time the device will lock for 5 minutes and then you can try again. If you fail too many times it will completely lock, you out and it will have to be unlocked by a professional. If you fail to report it, they will tow your car.
If you find yourself facing the possibility of license suspension and ignition interlock device installation on your call, it doesn’t hurt to confide in an Athens DUI lawyer to find out everything you need to know regarding your case. Call our office today and schedule a consultation.