Ignition Interlock Devices – Key Information from a Pro Attorney
What you need to know about the IID program after a DUI in Columbia and Charleston
If you’re convicted of DUI or DUAC charges, you may be required to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in your vehicle. An IID is a device designed to lock your ignition if you have been drinking and attempt to drive.
Our state’s IID program is extremely strict, and it’s important to understand exactly how ignition interlock devices work, as well as under what circumstances you may be required to use them.
Unfortunately, in many DUI cases, the IID is required and there are very few ways to opt out. The only way to avoid having to use an ignition interlock device is, in many cases, to avoid conviction – and this is where The Law Offices of A. Randolph Hough, P.A. comes in. We start working on your case at the very beginning, working to have your charges minimized, dropped, or dismissed. Our job is to negotiate with prosecutors or vigorously fight your case in court for the best possible outcome for your personal circumstances. Call us today.
How do ignition interlock devices work?
Ignition interlock devices are breath testing device and Breathalyzers. In order to start his or her car, a person must breathe into the IID, which measures blood alcohol content (BAC) level. If the BAC is above a certain level, the ignition will lock, and the vehicle won’t start. Drivers with IIDs must typically take a “rolling” or “random” retest, which means they must periodically pull over and blow into the device again to verify they haven’t been drinking since they started driving again.
Ignition interlock devices are equipped with safety and security measures that prevent tampering. Attempting to disable or tamper with an IID can cause additional penalties – never try to disable an ignition interlock device.
You can find out specific details about IIDs in the South Carolina DPPPS Ignition Interlock brochure.
“Remember, an arrest is not a conviction.” - Attorney Hough
Things to know about the SC ignition interlock program
Attorney Hough’s 25+ years of practicing law gives him vast experience defending clients against DUI charges. Our team works to help you avoid the consequences of conviction, including ignition interlock devices. Following are several of the key points about the IID program and what it involves:
- Repeat offenders, as well as first-time offenders with a BAC of .15 or higher, or who refused the breath test, are required to complete the IID program
- Ignition interlock device users must use a device equipped with a camera
- You cannot opt out of the IID program; if you do, you will not regain your license
- Driving without a required IID or tampering with an IID brings stiff penalties
- Users of IIDs must have their devices inspected and data downloaded at a service center at least once every 60 days
- The user must pay for all costs of the program
As you can see, the ignition interlock device program can have a huge effect on your life – both in restricting your freedom and affecting you financially. We can work with you to avoid conviction and the negative impact of mandatory participation in the IID program.
How much does an ignition interlock device cost?
You are responsible for all costs involved with the ignition interlock program. Depending on the amount of time you’re required to have an IID, as well as installation costs, you could be looking at hundreds or even thousands of dollars over the course of the program.
What happens if I fail my IID breath test?
If you fail your test, your vehicle will lock up for a short period (typically a few minutes) and then gives you another opportunity. Any subsequent failures will lock the car for a longer period. Ignition interlock device failures and violations are tracked in the device and you’ll likely be asked to bring your vehicle in for service to collect the data.
The South Carolina IID program tracks violations using a points system, and once offenders accumulate four or more points, their restricted driver’s license will be suspended for one more year. The points system works like this:
- Attempt to start vehicle with BAC of .02 and higher – one-half point
- Running re-test with BAC between .02 and .04 – one-half point
- Failing to service the IID – one point
- Running re-test with BAC between .04 and .15 – one point
- Running re-test with BAC between .15 and higher – two points
As you can see, it doesn’t take long for points to accumulate.
The Law Offices of A. Randolph Hough, P.A. also aggressively defends clients against other criminal charges, including assault, arson, kidnapping, and charges against college students. We also handle drunk driving defense.
Strong DUI defense when you need it
Any DUI or DUAC arrest is a serious charge. Losing your driver’s license and having a criminal charge on your record can affect every aspect of your life – work, finances, relationships, and freedom. And the collateral consequences, like mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device in your car, can be expensive and even embarrassing.
Attorney Hough has the valuable expertise and convenient Columbia and Charleston locations to help through the complex administrative and criminal proceedings that come along with DUI charges. We’ll help you protect your driver’s license and your personal rights.
Work with attorney who’s handled more than 2,000 DUI cases
If you’re facing charges for driving under the influence, you need strong, strategic defense. At The Law Offices of A. Randolph Hough, P.A., we are dedicated to DUI defense and we have what it takes to win. It’s important to act quickly to retain your freedom and your driving privileges. To schedule a free consultation at one of our offices in Columbia or Charleston, please call 803-771-4119 or fill out our contact form.