Mandatory (DUI) Ignition Interlock Devices In California

October 17, 2016

Governor Signs Mandatory Ignition Interlock Bill Into Law

If you or a loved one are charged with a DUI, the stakes just went up, making a conviction even more onerous, even for first-time offenders. The California legislature passed a Senate Bill 1046 requiring drivers convicted of a DUI (regardless of whether they are first-time offenders or repeat offenders) to install an ignition interlock device (i.e. an in-vehicle Breathalyzer) in their vehicles. Governor Jerry Brown signed the bill into law in September 2016. bac-test

The new law expands an existing four-county pilot program that requires ignition interlock devices after a DUI conviction. The pilot program was utilized in Los Angeles, Alameda, Sacramento and Tulare counties. The new statewide program goes into effect on January 1, 2019, according to

28 states currently require ignition interlock devices be installed in vehicles of all convicted drunken drivers.


Specifics of Mandatory Ignition Interlock Device Law

If you are convicted as a first-time DUI offender and you did not harm a third party, you will be given the option to either have the ignition interlock device installed for six months while maintaining your driving privileges or forgo the ignition interlock device for one year of restricted driving privileges where you are confined to driving to work or school.

If you are convicted as a first-time DUI offender and you harmed a third party (e.g., automobile collision, hitting a pedestrian, etc.) then you will be required to install the ignition interlock device and keep it in your vehicle for six months.

If you have multiple DUI convictions on your record, the length of time the ignition interlock device must stay in your vehicle is extended. For example, a second DUI conviction will result in having to install and use the ignition interlock device for one year. A third DUI conviction will result in mandatory use of the device for two years. A fourth DUI conviction will result in mandatory use of the device for three years.

In addition, you will have to purchase the device, which will run you roughly $60-to-$80 per month. The installation cost is estimated to be between $70-to-$150.


Hiring an Experienced DUI Defense Attorney Just Became That Much More Important

Do you want to go through the embarrassing and inconvenient process of taking a Breathalyzer test each and every time you use your vehicle for six months, and maybe longer? That is what will be necessary if you are convicted of a DUI in the State of California. In addition to the new mandatory ignition interlock device law, there are other penalties associated with a DUI conviction, including:

  • Monetary fine between $1,800 and $3,600
  • Possible jail time
  • Attendance and completion of a three-month alcohol-treatment program. The program can be extended to nine months if your blood alcohol level was 0.20% or higher.

This is why you need to retain an experienced Los Angeles DUI defense attorney. You need to do everything in your power to challenge the charges against you.

Contact our Los Angeles DUI Defense Law Firm Today

The Law Office of Peter Berlin is dedicated to providing premier criminal defense representation of each of our clients, including those charged with a DUI. If you have been charged with a DUI, then you will greatly benefit from the legal experience and counsel of Peter Berlin and his legal team. Call us today (310) 289-5418.