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Ignition Interlock Device

Driving under the influence can result in a multitude of consequences including fines, DUI school, community service imprisonment and in some cases the required installation of an ignition interlock device (IID). An ignition interlock device is a type of portable alcohol monitoring equipment that is designed to stop the offender from drinking and driving.

An ignition interlock device is attached to the engine of a vehicle when it’s installed. The idea of an IID is that the person must provide a breath sample that is below .08 BAC (blood-alcohol concentration) before driving. Failure to do so will result in the engine locking itself. If you or someone you know has been charged with DUI, it’s important you seek out an experienced criminal defense attorney for assistance.

DUI Attorney for Ignition interlock Devices in St. Lucie County, FL

The court will typically order a repeat or aggravated DUI offender to install an ignition interlock device onto their car. This frustrating piece of technology could limit your ability to drive since they are known to malfunction and leave the DUI offender stranded, even though they are sober. For these reasons and more, we highly suggest you get in contact with an experienced criminal defense attorney at Meltzer & Bell.

You can fight back with experienced representation from Meltzer & Bell. We have been practicing DUI law for years and have the right resources and skills to fight any charge no matter how serious. Call us now at (772) 291-2534 to set up your first consultation free of charge. Meltzer & Bell represents people throughout the greater St. Lucie County and Martin County area including Fort Pierce, Saint Lucie, Port St. Lucie, Palm City and Stuart.

Overview of Ignition Interlock Device Laws in FL


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What Are Florida’s Laws for Ignition Interlock Devices?

In Florida, if you are convicted of a second or aggravated DUI then you will automatically be court ordered to install an ignition interlock device (IID) to your car. The purpose of an ignition interlock device is to discourage you from drinking and driving again. Most first-time DUI offenders will not be ordered to install an ignition interlock device.

It’s important to understand that although a first-time DUI offender is unlikely to be ordered to install an IID, it doesn’t mean they can’t be. A judge does have the power to add an ignition interlock device to your sentencing for up to six months if they feel it’s appropriate to protect the general public. This may be a rare occurrence, but it is a possibility.

If you were convicted of an aggravated DUI, then the chances of a judge court ordering you to install an ignition interlock device are high. An aggravated DUI is when you have a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 or higher or if you had a passenger under the age of 18 in the vehicle during the commission of the crime. A conviction for an aggravated DUI will result in an ignition interlock device for at least 6 months. If you have a prior aggravated DUI, then you must have an IID installed for no less than two years.

Repeat DUI offenders are required to have an ignition interlock device installed under Florida law. Until the IID is installed you won’t be able to receive a restricted license or hardship license. The IID must also be approved by the court and state standards that are outlined in the Florida statutes. The following are the requirements for repeat DUI offenders in Florida.

  • Second DUI Conviction – At least one year
  • Third DUI Conviction (outside 10 years of last offense) – At least two years
  • Third DUI Conviction (within 10 years of last offense) – No less than two years
  • Subsequent DUI Conviction – At least five years

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What is an Ignition Interlock Device?

An ignition interlock device is a type of breathalyzer that’s attached to the engine of your car. It’s hardwired into your engine and measures your blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) to determine if you are too inebriated to drive. If you have a BAC of .08 or higher, then the IID will automatically turn off and lock your engine.

You can’t have a friend or family member to “blow” into the device to get it started either. Ignition interlock devices require “rolling re-tests” so it won’t allow you to use another person’s sample to trick the device. A “rolling re-test” is when the IID starts to beep and request another breath sample while you are driving. To continue driving you will have to submit your breath sample as soon as possible while you are operating the vehicle.

If you fail to submit a breath sample or have a BAC of .08 or higher, then the car will automatically beep the horn, flashlights and turn on the windshield wipers until you pull over. The engine will then lock and once it’s unlocked you will have to submit a breath sample once again to restart the car.


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How Much Does an Ignition Interlock Device Cost in FL?

All the installation and monthly costs for an ignition interlock device must be paid in full by you if you were convicted of DUI. An ignition interlock device must meet the states and court’s standards so you will have to pay for its installation through an ignition interlock device company. You can view a list of IID providers at the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) that follow the requirements by the National Highway Safety and Traffic Administration (NHTSA).

To receive an accurate quote on pricing for IID you will have to contact an interlock device company. In some cases, these companies will offer payment plans for people who are having financial struggles paying their IID costs. These typically include the following expenses:

  • Installation – $75
  • Monthly monitoring – $72.50
  • Refundable deposit – $100; or
  • Monthly insurance charge – $5

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Additional Resources


DHSMV Ignition Interlock Program
– Visit the official website for the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and review their list for IID providers. Here you can access the different IID companies who have devices that meet the standards by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The site is also available to read in Español if needed.

IID Frequently Asked Questions – Visit the official website of the DHSMV and find answers to frequently asked IID questions for ignition interlock devices available in both English or Español. Find more information on IID violations, the accuracy of IIDs, rolling re-tests, and what happens if your car is undergoing repairs while an IID is installed.


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Defense Lawyer for IID in Martin County, FL

Ignition interlock devices are expensive and aren’t always accurate. Many people who have been required to install an IID have issues because the device may give false BAC readings. That means you could be stranded although you haven’t had a single drop of alcohol. Fight your charges so you can avoid this scenario by calling the attorneys at Meltzer & Bell.

Meltzer & Bell have been practicing collectively for over 20 years. We have extensive DUI law experience and have a special focus defending repeat and aggravated offenders. Call us now at (772) 291-2534 to schedule your first consultation. Meltzer & Bell defends people throughout the greater Treasure Coast area including St. Lucie County and Martin County, FL.


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