With the new law that went into effect July 1st, 2017, people charged with their first DUI in Georgia have the option of having an ignition interlock device installed in their car or having an Administrative License Hearing. Many people are unsure about what an ignition interlock device is or how much it costs.
First, an ignition interlock device is a device installed in your vehicle to prevent drinking and driving. It has a mouthpiece and a cord that attaches to your car's ignition system. The device requires you to blow into it before starting your car to test your Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC). If the device indicates that you have been drinking, the car will not turn on.
The device can also check whether a person has been drinking while driving. During a trip, an ignition interlock device may require the driver to pull over and provide another sample. If the driver tests positive for the presence of alcohol, it will turn off the vehicle.
There are two circumstances where a Georgia Driver may install an ignition interlock device:
The first reason is when a person chooses to install an ignition interlock device in lieu of filing a 30-day letter, requesting a Georgia ALS Hearing.
When a driver chooses this option, he or she must keep the interlock device on their car for the entire 12-months. However, the driver will not have to be concerned that they will completely lose their driving privilege.
In essence, society gets a safer driver on the roadways, and the accused DUI driver retains his ability to drive and provide for his family.
The second circumstance where an ignition interlock device will be required is when a person is convicted of a second Georgia DUI or more within a five (5) year period.
After serving at least four (4) months of a “hard” license suspension, without a permit, a driver convicted of a second DUI must install an ignition interlock device on their car for the next 12-months. After installing the device, the convicted DUI driver can resume a somewhat normal life.
Are any costs associated with ignition interlock devices?
Yes, there are significant costs that coincide with getting an ignition interlock device installed. First, it costs between $100-$200 for the device to be installed. Second, there is a monthly fee ranging from $60-$80. Third, the driver is required to pay any costs associated with maintenance for the device. Finally, it costs around $250 to get the ignition interlock removed.
The choice is yours:
For a first DUI in Georgia, choosing whether to install an ignition interlock device or go to an Administrative License Hearing is not a decision to take lightly. It is in your best interest to speak to an experienced Georgia DUI Attorney. Our office has over 40 combined years of criminal defense expertise and is prepared to assist you with your case today. Contact us now for a free case evaluation. Never suffer Georgia DUI Penalties without first seeking legal advice.