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Three Questions You Might Have if You Have to Install an Interlock Device on Your Car

February 2, 2015

Under Tennessee law, an “ignition interlock device (IID)” is usually required for all first time DUI convictions. These are devices that are hooked directly into your car’s ignition that will allow it to start, given a couple of requirements.

How Does It Work?

The electronic device is installed into the ignition of the car that requires the driver to provide a breath sample before the driver can start the vehicle. After this happens, the driver’s blood alcohol content (or BAC) will be calculated. If the BAC is greater than the allowed level, which in Tennessee is 0.02%, the car will not start, and the event will be logged in a report that will eventually be sent to the court. Additionally, random breath tests are required while the engine is on to ensure the sample provided was authentic and the driver is maintaining a safe minimum BAC.

How Much Will It Cost?

In addition to fees related to a DUI conviction, defendants are also liable for all costs associated with installing, maintaining, and removing the IID. Installation will be, at the most, around $150. There is also a monthly charge that drivers are liable for, which can be up to $100 a month. Even removing the device will also cost the driver up to $75. All in all, the device can ultimately end up costing a driver more than $1,000 in the long run.

What Can I Do?

Despite the additional costs and inconveniences an Ignition Interlock Device may have, it provides some people who were formerly prohibited from driving a necessary freedom, and it can be a favorable alternative to other forms of punishment that come along with a DUI conviction. Regardless of the particular situation, a skilled, knowledgeable DUI attorney will understand exactly what you’re up against and will fight for your best interests.