Information on Ignition Interlock Devices in the Peach State of GA
When it comes to the GA Ignition Interlock laws that govern what the DUI and DWI offense punishment is, the conditions and penalties are the same throughout the state of Georgia including cities like Athens, Atlanta, Macon, Savannah, Marietta, Augusta, and beyond. Any driver found to be operating a vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more will be considered driving impaired and will be charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI). There are a number of penalties associated with being convicted of DUI, which include jail, fines, license suspension, and a driver will be required to get an Ignition Interlock installed. A convicted DUI driver having to get a car Breathalyzer interlock is a common penalty in GA, even for a first DUI offense conviction.
Every state across the country uses a BAC of 0.08 percent as the threshold for being charged with a DUI or DWI related crime. Government research has been performed that determined the majority of individuals are too impaired to drive with a BAC of 0.05 percent and that all individuals are too impaired to drive with a BAC of 0.08 percent. Additionally, individuals under the age of 21 are charged with DUI if they have a BAC of 0.02 percent or more, and those driving commercial vehicles are charged with DUI if they have a BAC of 0.04 percent or more. Soon after a driver gets arrested for DUI charge in Georgia, many people ask “will I need to get an Ignition Interlock installed to save my license?” In order to have the best chance of success for possible ways how to avoid the Ignition Interlock requirements, along with the additional high costs that come with the penalties of a DUI conviction in GA, a person needs to have their arrest details reviewed as soon as possible.
What Are the Penalties for Driving Under the Influence in Georgia?
The state of Georgia uses a number of different penalties which also include the requirement and cost of getting an Ignition Interlock device to punish those convicted of DUI – this is a means to discourage drinking and driving behavior for the safety of the driver as well as the safety of others. The best way how to avoid the severe penalties and costs is to know exactly what to do for how to fight Georgia DUI charges successfully, when a case can gets dismissed in court. However those who get convicted of DUI for the first time in the state of Georgia, will face the following penalties:
- 24 Hours to One Year in Jail
- Paying Fines Between $300 and $1,000
- Having a License Suspension or Ignition Interlock device of Up to One Year
Repeat DUI offenders face the same types of penalties, but they are often much more severe, meaning longer jail time and license suspensions as well as higher fines. Those convicted of DUI a second time within a 10 year period face the following penalties in GA:
- Three Days to One Year in Jail
- Paying Fines Between $600 and $1,000
- Serving a License Suspension of Three Years
- Having to Install and Use an Ignition Interlock for a longer period of time as Court Ordered
Third time DUI offenders in the state of Georgia face penalties such as:
- 15 Days to One Year in Jail
- Paying Fines Between $1,000 and $5,000
- Serving a License Suspension of Five Years
- Having to Install and pay for all the costs of an Ignition Interlock for several years
Does Georgia Enforce an Implied Consent Law?
An “implied consent law” is a law enforced in almost every state across the country. In the state of Georgia, this law states that those who are issued a state driver’s license automatically agree to have breath, urine, or blood testing completed in order to determine their BAC when it comes to a potential drinking and driving charge. Individuals do have the right to refuse a DUI Breathalyzer or blood test, but should they refuse the tests they will face fines and an automatic license suspension, which is handled separately from the license suspension they receive should they be convicted. A person will also need to get an Ignition Interlock device on any car they will be driving, once they get their driver’s license back. It is important to also note that a DUI interlock device will be required to be installed on any work vehicle or company car a person will be driving for work as well.
First time DUI offenders in Georgia who refuse to submit to chemical testing have to serve a license suspension of one year – second time offenders who refuse testing a suspension of three years, and those who are on their third offense and refuse testing have their license suspended for a period of five years. They will also be required to get and use an Ignition Interlock for a longer period of time, when a second DUI or repeat offense is involved.
What is an Ignition Interlock Device and How Does it Work?
In some DUI cases in GA, the court may order convicted offenders to install, use, and maintain an Ignition Interlock device, also called a car Breathalyzer Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID). Simply, an interlock device is used to stop DUI offenders from driving a vehicle should their BAC be above the predetermined threshold for the device, which is most often set at a threshold of 0.05 percent. The DUI interlock machine links the vehicle’s ignition system with breath detection technology to help prevent offenders from driving when they are impaired.
DUI Offenders who are ordered to use an Ignition interlock in Georgia need to blow into the device much like a Breathalyzer device in order to start their vehicle. Should their blood alcohol content be below the threshold, they are able to start and operate their vehicle as usual. Should their BAC be above the threshold, the vehicle does not start and is not operational. Additionally, some interlock devices are programmed to require offenders to blow into the device while the vehicle is running during a trip in order to prevent drinking while behind the wheel.
When is Using an Ignition Interlock Device Required in the State of Georgia?
Judges in the Georgia court system are required to order the installation, use, and maintenance of an Ignition Interlock device as a condition of reinstatement for a DUI offender’s driver’s license in the following circumstances:
- Second or Subsequent DUI Offenders – an Ignition Interlock is required for a minimum of 12 months
- Habitual DUI Offenders (Two or More Drunk Driving Convictions) – the car Breathalyzer interlock device is required for six months (after probationary license is issued)
Who is Will Have to Pay for the Cost of an Ignition Interlock Device?
In almost all DUI cases in the state of Georgia where an Ignition Interlock is ordered, the person who is convicted or pleads guilty to a DUI offense is responsible for paying all costs associated with obtaining, installing, and maintaining the device. DUI offenders who are ordered to get and install an interlock should expect to pay up to $100 to have the device installed – some companies do offer free IID installation. –A person can expect to pay a cost between $75 and $125 in monthly leasing and maintenance fees. It is important to keep in mind these figures are rough cost estimates and the actual cost of installing and maintaining an Ignition Interlock device varies by location and provider.
What is the Process of Getting an Ignition Interlock Device in Georgia?
When convicted DUI offenders are ordered to use an Ignition Interlock as a term of getting a driver’s license back in Georgia, they will need to go through the appropriate process of obtaining and installing the IID. The device needs to be obtained from a state approved IID provider – these providers can be found throughout the state, and a list of approved providers can also be found on the Georgia Department of Motor Vehicles website.
A DUI offender will need to lease the Ignition Interlock from an approved provider and also have the device installed in any of their registered vehicles by an approved installation professional. This will also include and company car or vehicle used for work, which could cause problems with many types of jobs. Once the DUI interlock device is installed, offenders likely have to provide proof of installation to the court as well as the Department of Motor Vehicles. The required documents include a copy of the IID lease agreement as well as a receipt reflecting the device’s installation. In some cases, offenders also have to provide their Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
We realize just how much getting an Ignition Interlock can affect a person’s life, and this is also why one of the first questions people who have been charged for a DUI charge in GA have is “will I have to get an Ignition Interlock device in my car?” After a Georgia Ignition Interlock lawyer reviews a person’s own arrest details online with us, they can then be able to discuss any possible ways and what DUI defense is available for how to avoid having to get and install an Ignition Interlock device in:
Ben Hill County
Jeff Davis County
Country Club Estates
Fort Benning South
North Druid Hills