If you have been arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in Georgia, you’ll face an automatic suspension of your driver’s license. If you agreed to take a breath, blood, or urine test, your license could be suspended for 120 days. If you refused to submit to testing, your license could be suspended for as long as 12 months. Traditionally, your only option would be to request an Administrative License Hearing to challenge the suspension.
However, you now have the option of either requesting a hearing or installing an ignition interlock device on your vehicle. This isn’t a decision you should make on your own. In this article, we’ll provide the basic information you should know about these devices. As usual, you should consult an Atlanta DUI lawyer for expert advice on your specific case.
What is An Ignition Interlock Device?
An IID is a machine that’s attached to your dashboard and it’s intended to prevent you from drinking and driving. It has a mouthpiece and a cable that’s linked to the car’s ignition system. When you try to start your car, you will first have to blow into the device. If the device registers any amount of alcohol, you won’t be able to start the car. IIDs can also check whether you’ve been drinking and driving. They can require that you pull over and provide another sample at some point during your journey. If your breath tests positive for alcohol, the vehicle will be turned off.
You’ll have to meet the costs associated with the device. These typically include a $100 to $200 installation fee, $60 to $80 in monthly fees along with device maintenance fees, and a $250 fee for removing the device. You’ll need to keep these costs in mind when you’re deciding whether to get an IID. Your DUI lawyer in Atlanta will help you to weigh the pros and cons.
When Is An Ignition Interlock Device Required?
As we noted in the introduction, installing an IID can help you to avoid the license suspension that accompanies a DUI arrest. It will be inconvenient, but you’ll still have the privilege of driving. If driving is important to your livelihood or your household’s functions, you may not mind the challenges or costs.
The second situation in which you may get an IID is if you’re convicted of a second DUI offense within five years. Your license will be suspended for at least 18 months. For the first 120 days, you won’t be able to drive at all. After that period, you can apply for a limited permit that would allow you to drive certain places. However, you would be required to have an ignition interlock device installed for at least 12 months. This helps to assure the authorities that the roads are safe.
Things to Keep in Mind if You Have an IID on Your Vehicle
An ignition interlock device gives you an opportunity to regain some sense or normalcy. However, you need to make sure you don’t tamper with the device. IIDs have features that are designed to ensure they won’t be manipulated. You also shouldn’t try to trick the device by having someone else blow into it. Most IIDS have cameras and if you try to beat the system, you could make your legal problems worse.
Another thing to consider is that IIDs are not infallible and they can record false positives, although it’s rare. IIDs simply detect the presence of alcohol. It doesn’t matter what kind. Mouthwashes and other products containing isopropyl alcohol can, therefore, cause the same positive test result as an alcoholic beverage. People who eat spicy or yeasty foods or use Chloraseptic spray can also record false positives. You should, therefore, avoid eating or drinking anything for at least 20 minutes before you get in your vehicle. If you register a false positive, you should contact a DUI lawyer in Atlanta for help.
Contact Howard & Arca DUI Lawyers Today!
If you’re facing DUI charges in Georgia, you’ll need advice and representation from an Atlanta DUI lawyer. Whether you’re trying to decide if to install an interlock device or you want to fight the charges, reach out to the team at Howard & Arca. We’ll analyze your case and give you our expert legal opinion on how you should proceed. DUI charges come with serious consequences that can last a lifetime. You should not attempt to handle the situation on your own. Get the representation you deserve by scheduling a consultation today.