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Understanding the basics of an ignition interlock device


An ignition interlock device is a machine that is installed on a vehicle and measures the blood-alcohol content in a person's body. Before the vehicle will start, the driver must blow into the machine so the BAC can be determined. It will also intermittently require the driver to blow into the machine to ensure that he or she was not drinking after the previous test. For drivers who are convicted of DUI, installation of this machine is part of the program allowing them to drive.

Since August 15, 2010, judges in cases related to a DUI charge were obligated to order this device be placed on any vehicle belonging to the person who was convicted. It is a condition for the person to receive probation or a conditional discharge. If the person receives a conviction for an aggravated-DWI or repeated alcohol or drug offenses within five years, the judge must order that the machine be placed on every vehicle the person owns while the driver's license has been revoked and during probation or conditional discharge.

If it is a repeat offender, the judge is also required to order that the person receive an alcohol assessment. An assessment might find that the person needs to be treated for alcohol issues. Before the probation or conditional discharge is granted, it might be necessary for the person to take part in a treatment program and complete it. The purchase and installation of the ignition interlock device will be the responsibility of the person who was convicted. If the person fails to adhere to the terms of the terms given by the court or there is a conviction of an offense other than one that occurred while parked, stopped or standing, then the driver's license will be revoked.

Since there are multiple penalties that accompany a conviction on a DUI charge and it is possible that the circumstances will require the driver to get an ignition interlock device on the vehicle, it is vital to formulate a strong defense against the charges. The ignition interlock device and everything that goes with it can be costly and troublesome. Discussing a defense with a legal professional is key to handling a case in which there is the chance of a license suspension or revocation and an ignition interlock device installed.

Source: dmv.ny.gov, "A Guide To Suspension & Revocation Of Driving Privileges In New York State -- Ignition Interlock Program, page 5," accessed on Aug. 28, 2017

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