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Ignition Interlock Devices (IID's)

Ignition Interlock Devices (IID's)

photo courtesy of SmartStart, Inc.

What are They?

An Ignition Interlock Device (IID) is a small breath-testing device that is installed inside a vehicle, requiring a potential driver to blow into the machine and produce an alcohol-free breath sample prior to starting the car.  They are similar in size to a cell-phone and are hard-wired to a car's ignition.

Why would I have to Install an IID in my car?

Beginning January 1, 2019, California law has implemented mandatory installation of IID's for all second and subsequent convictions of DUI's (without injury or refusal) as a condition of probation.  The installation on first Offense DUI's is discretionary with the court, unless there is an injury (23153 CVC); higher BAC's require the court to consider imposing an IID order.  DUI's with injury (23153 CVC)  have a mandatory one-year IID order.

Why Would I actually WANT AN IID ORDER?

Although burdensome and expensive (see below for costs), an IID can be helpful for people who have a hard time trusting themselves to make the right decision regarding driving, especially after drinking.  Also, since the change in the law in 2019, those that install IID devices on their cars can get their privilege to drive back quicker, and are not subject to a work/program restriction.  On a first offense over-21misdemeanor DUI with no injury and no refusal, a driver can install an IID for 6 months and have unlimited driving permission (so long as the IID is installed and working), and not have to wait the mandatory 30 day “hard” suspension, nor are they subject to the work/program restriction.  Second and subsequent offenders, who previously had to wait between 90 days and one year to get a restricted license, can now get the privileges back without a “hard suspension” or any time without a privilege.

How do I get my license back Using an IID?

To get a license after a DUI and installation of an IID, you must bring the following to DMV:

  1. Proof of Enrollment in DUI school;
  2. Proof of installation of the IID device;
  3. Proof of Insurance via SR-22 (form); and
  4. Pay $125 reissuance fee

Under the new law, you do not have to wait 30, 90 or 180 days, and once installed, enrolled and insured, you can legally drive anywhere with the IID functioning.  Thus, there is actually a benefit to having an IID ordered on your vehicle.

How long must I have an IID Device in my car?

On a first offense, non-injury non-refusal over 21 DUI, you can get a license re-issued immediately with the four steps described above, and the order is for no longer than six Months.  A DUI with a single prior has a one-year long IID requirement, and subsequent offenses can go as long as 3 years.

Can I get a license back with an IID if I have a Drug-related DUI?

Unfortunately, although the DMV does not currently suspend for DUI-Drugs, the conviction therefore will result in a six month “hard” suspension, and an IID will not allow for an exception.

How Much does an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Cost?

The court does not set the fees and costs associated with IID's, so a person ordered to install will have to contract with third-party vendors that are certified by the state to install an maintain these devices.  Fortunately, more and more companies are providing this service, and our firm works with them to provide reliable units at fair costs.  Generally, installation varies by age and type of car, but older key-ignitions are free, and push-button and newer (2013 and later) currently run from $100-$150.  The installers also charge monthly rental fees on the units, ranging from $60-$100 month, which include periodic calibration.  Warranty programs are available at additional costs.  Removal fees are currently around $100.  IID companies are required to consider reduced fees for qualifying reduced income applicants.

What if I drive a company Car, does it have to have an IID?

If you drive a car for work that is not your personal vehicle, you can get a form from DMV (DL923) that advises your employer of your IID requirement, but then you would be waived from installing an IID on the work vehicle, per 23576 CVC.

What if I am accused of Tampering with my IID Device?

Tampering, modifying disabling, bypassing or destroying a court-ordered IID device can be a violation of probation and could result in additional charges or further suspensions (VC 23247)

Although the laws governing IID devices can be a bit technical, the IID can also provide an opportunity to get back to driving where before no driving privilege was available.

Call today if you'd like a referral to an IID installer or need help with Court.

Joel Bailey 760 643 4025


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