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DUI Ignition Interlock Requirements in Ohio

Discuss all your options after a DUI charge. Call LHA right away at (513) 338-1890 to schedule a free consultation.

In addition to possible jail time and heavy fines, a conviction for operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol (OVI/DUI) can result in a driver’s license suspension, having to use an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle, and the collateral consequences that come with having a criminal record.

The installation of an ignition interlock device is only mandatory in certain OVI cases. If you have been arrested for drunk driving, it is important that you understand the DUI ignition interlock requirements and how a qualified Cincinnati DUI lawyer can help you avoid an OVI conviction.

Experienced Cincinnati DUI lawyer Brad Groene has successfully defended hundreds of clients facing OVI charges and will work tirelessly to achieve the best result possible in your case. Call Ohio DUI attorney Brad Groene today at (513) 338-1890 to schedule a free consultation.

What Is an Ignition Interlock Device and How Does It Work?

According to Ohio Administrative Code Section 4501-45(E), an ignition interlock device is a device that connects a breathalyzer to a vehicle’s ignition system. In order to start the vehicle, the driver must blow into the breathalyzer to determine the concentration alcohol in the breath. The device keeps track of the breath samples submitted and the stored data can be retrieved by the court or probation officer to determine if there have been any violations.

If the driver’s BAC is below the predetermined levels, the vehicle will start and additional breath samples will be required at preset intervals. If the driver has a BAC that is above the preset limit, it will not start. Once the driver is operating the vehicle, they must provide a new sample when prompted, otherwise, the vehicle will automatically be disabled once stopped.

When is an Ignition Interlock Device Required?

Ohio law makes ignition interlock devices discretionary in most cases. For example, a judge may require the installation of an ignition interlock device in the following circumstances:

  • First-time offenders
  • Second OVI offense that is more than ten years after the first conviction
  • Underage DUI (OVUAC)
  • Refusal to submit to a blood, breath, or urine test after being arrested for suspicion of a DUI

The ignition interlock device is mandatory for anyone convicted of a second or subsequence OVI offense within 10 years. Whether you have any previous OVI convictions, your BAC at the time of arrest, and the presence of any aggravating factors can all impact how long you are required to use an IID on your vehicle.

How Does Annie’s Law Impact Ohio OVI Cases?

Ohio House Bill 388, also known as Annie’s Law, went into effect April 6, 2017, and means harsher penalties for OVI offenders and creates new incentives to use ignition interlock devices. The changes will result in more people being charged as repeat offenders because the law increases the look-back period from six to ten years and applies it to additional DUI-related offenses.

Under the new law, the mandatory minimum license suspension for first-time OVI offenders increases from six months to one year. However, you can request unlimited driving privileges on the condition that you install an IID in your vehicle. The court also has the authority to reduce the driver’s license suspension to six months if the IID is requested. This incentive will likely lead to an expanded use of IIDs.

What are the Consequences of an Ignition Interlock Device Violation?

Annie’s law also increases the penalties for IID violations. The penalties for an IID violation depend on the nature of the wrongdoing, whether it is your first violation, or if you are a repeat OVI offender.

Under current law, any of the following violations can result in additional penalties:

  • Tamper with or circumvent the IID
  • Fail to install the IID pursuant to a court order or
  • Operate a motor vehicle that is not equipped with an IID
  • IID detects alcohol concentration that exceeds the preset limit

If you commit an IID violation, the court has the authority to double the length of the suspension and the period during which the person must drive with an IID. If the violation occurs within 60 days from the date the suspension ended, the court is required to extend the suspension so that it terminates 60 days from the date of the violation.

Contact a Skilled Ohio DUI Lawyer with Luftman, Heck & Associates

Interlock ignition devices are a costly and arduous penalty for anyone convicted of a DUI. The best way to prevent having to install an interlock ignition device on your vehicle is to avoid a DUI conviction altogether, which is why having an experienced criminal defense lawyer by your side is so crucial.

Cincinnati DUI attorney Brad Groene understands how to build an effective defense strategy and has extensive experience negotiating with prosecutors on behalf of his clients. He will fight to get your charges reduced or dismissed whenever possible.

For experienced and skilled legal representation that you can rely on, contact LHA today at (513) 338-1890 for a free legal consultation.