Will I Have to Get an Ignition Interlock for a DUI Offense in Maryland?

Information on the Ignition Interlock Device in the Old Line State of MD

Baltimore, Ocean City, Silver Spring, Rockville, Frederick, Gaithersburg, and all other cities in the state of Maryland follow the same MD Ignition Interlock rules and regulations when it comes to drivers who get convicted or plead guilty to DUI and DWI charges. A person who is discovered to be operating a vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more will be subject to being charged with a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) offense. For those who are charged and then found guilty in court, there are a number of different penalties that can include fines, jail time, license suspension, and will likely have to get an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in order to legally drive in Maryland.

Ignition Interlock for a DUI Offense in MarylandIndividuals can be charged with DUI or DWI if their BAC is 0.08 percent or above, but they can also be charged with a drinking and driving related crime in other circumstances as well. Those operating commercial vehicles can be charged with DUI when their BAC is 0.04 percent or more, and minors, those under the age of 21, can also be charged if their BAC is 0.02 percent. Government research shows most people’s driving ability is impaired when their BAC reaches 0.05 percent and all individuals are impaired with a BAC of 0.08 percent. Given the serious penalties under the new MD DUI laws that have been passed, a person will need to explore every possible defense after an arrest for potential ways of preventing a driver’s license suspension and Ignition Interlock requirements in Maryland.

What are the Car Breathalyzer Interlock Penalties for Driving Under the Influence in Maryland?

Those who are charged and convicted of DUI or Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) face a number of different penalties for their crime. These punishments are used as a way to discourage offenders from drinking and driving again while also acting as a means of preventing others from doing the same. Those on their first DUI or DWI conviction in Maryland face penalties that include:

Driving Under the Influence: First Offense

1. Up to One Year in Jail
2. Up to $1,000 Fine
3. Minimum Six Month MD Driver’s License Suspension
4. Having to Get an Ignition Interlock Installed

Driving While Intoxicated: First Offense

1. Up to Two Months in Jail
2. Up to $500 Fine
3. Minimum Six Month License Suspension Period
4 An Ignition Interlock Device is required

Should offenders have a previous DUI or DWI conviction within the last five years, they are considered repeat offenders. Repeat offenders of these crimes often face much harsher penalties and a longer period of time for having to use an Ignition Interlock device in MD. Those on their second MD DUI or DWI conviction face penalties that include:

Driving Under the Influence: Second Offense

1. Up to Two Years in Jail
2. Up to $2,000 Fine
3. One Year License Suspension
4. Required to Use an IID

Driving While Intoxicated: Second Offense

1. Up to One Year in Jail
2. Up to $500 Fine
3. One Year License Suspension
4. Required to Use an IID

Those on their third DUI or DWI offense conviction in Maryland will face penalties that include:

Driving Under the Influence: Third Offense

1. Up to Three Years in Jail
2. Up to $3,000 Fine
3. Minimum 18 Month License Suspension
4. Required to Get an Ignition Interlock a Minimum of 2 Years

Driving While Intoxicated: Third Offense

1. Up to Three Years in Jail
2. Up to $3,000 Fine
3. Minimum 18 Month License Suspension
4. Required to Use a DUI/DWI Interlock For 2 Years on Average

Implied Consent Law in Maryland

The state of Maryland enforces an “implied consent” law, which means drivers who refuse to take chemical testing during DUI arrests to determine their BAC are subject to a fine and automatic license suspension and Ignition Interlock device installation requirement. This DUI or DWI testing can include blood, urine, or Breathalyzer testing to determine BAC. First time MD DUI offenders who refuse testing are subject to a 120-day license suspension – second and third time offenders who refuse testing are subject to a one-year license suspension and having to use an Ignition Interlock device for a much longer period of time.

What is an Ignition Interlock Device and How Does It Work With DUI & DWI Laws Maryland?

An IID or Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) is a device used in individuals’ vehicles to prevent them from drinking and driving. For how the DUI interlock works in Maryland, this device is most often mounted on the vehicle’s dashboard and works much in the same manner as a standard Breathalyzer test. In order to operate the vehicle, users need to blow into the device to have their blood alcohol content level analyzed – when their BAC is below the pre-determined threshold, the car will operate as usual, but when their BAC is above the pre-determined threshold, it does not start.

An Ignition Interlock integrates Breathalyzer technology with the vehicle’s ignition system, which prevents the car from starting when the driver’s BAC is above the pre-determined level. Additionally, some car Breathalyzer interlock systems in Maryland are set up so they require intermittent testing while the car is being operated – this is meant to prevent drivers from having another person blow into the IID in order for them to drive it without being tested. Should drivers not perform the intermittent test, the incident is logged and an alarm sounded until the car is turned off.

When is Using an Ignition Interlock Device Required in the State of Maryland?

The state of Maryland has authorized the use of an Ignition Interlock device for certain individuals who are convicted of alcohol related driving offenses as a condition of having their driver’s license reinstated. Courts authorize the installation and requirement of getting an Ignition Interlock device as a condition of an offender’s probation or if offenders registered a BAC of 0.15 percent or more when they were arrested. A judge requires these offenders to use an IID for one to three years.

Who is Responsible for Paying for the Costs of an Ignition Interlock Device in MD?

In most cases where an Ignition Interlock is authorized in MD, a DUI/DWI offender is responsible for paying all costs of installing and using the interlock. These expenses include the cost of installation, maintenance of the device, monthly lease payments, as well as removal when the period of use has ended. Individuals should expect to pay around $100 for the installation of an IID although some providers do offer free installation. Additionally, they should expect to pay between $75 and $125 a month to lease the device. Keep in mind this is just a rough estimate of the costs of installing and maintaining an Ignition Interlock device in Maryland.

What is the Process of Obtaining an Ignition Interlock Device in Maryland?

Once offenders have been authorized to use an IID as a means to have their driver’s license reinstated, they need to lease the device from a state approved IID provider. Companies that provide Ignition Interlock devices can be found all across the state of Maryland, and DUI & DWI offenders need to find a company considered an approved interlock provider. A full list of these approved providers can be found online on the Maryland Department of Motor Vehicle’s website.

Once a DUI/DWI offender has leased the Ignition Interlock device, they need to have it professionally installed to meet the state of Maryland standards under the law. After installation, individuals likely need to report back to the court, their probation officer, and/or the Department of Motor Vehicles with proof of installation and proof the device was leased from an approved provider. Often times, a copy of the lease agreement and a copy of the receipt of the installation of the device are enough to pacify the court. When a MD Ignition Interlock lawyer reviews a driver’s own arrest circumstances online with us, they can then be in a proper position to inform a driver of any potential defense options are available for how to avoid having to get an Ignition Interlock device installed in:

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