Will I Have to Get an Ignition Interlock for a DWI Offense in New York?

Information on Having to Get an Ignition Interlock Device Installed in the Empire State of NY

Syracuse, Albany, New York City, Buffalo, Rochester, and all other cities in the state of New York have the same Leandra’s Law Ignition Interlock Device penalties when it comes to DWI, DUI, and drinking and driving charges. Any driver found to be operating a vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more will be arrested and charged with Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). Should individuals be convicted of this crime, they face a number of penalties as a result – these penalties can include a driver’s license suspension, possible jail sentence, fines, and possibly having to use an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) installed on any car they will be driving, which also will include any company car or other vehicle a person drives for work.

Ignition Interlock for a DWI Offense in New YorkA BAC of 0.08 percent is the standard used for being charged with drinking and driving related criminal charges across the country, and can result in the New York Ignition Interlock requirement upon a conviction for even a first DWI offense. This is because of research that was performed to determine the effects alcohol has on an individual’s ability to drive – most individuals were found to be too impaired to drive with a BAC of 0.05 percent, and it was found that all individuals are too impaired with a BAC of 0.08 percent. Additionally, the state of New York charges minors (under 21) with DWI should their BAC be 0.02 percent or more and commercial drivers who have a BAC of 0.04 percent or more.

What Are the Required Penalties for Driving While Intoxicated in New York?

For those DWI offenders who are subsequently convicted of their crime, they face a number of penalties as outlined by the state of New York. These penalties are meant to discourage offenders from drinking and driving again as well as serve as an example for other individuals. First time DWI offenders, or those with no previous convictions on their record, face penalties that include:

  • Fines Between $500 and $1,000
  • Minimum Six Month Driver’s License Suspension
  • Ignition Interlock Requirement for NY Driver’s License Reinstatement

2nd DWI repeat offenders, or those with previous DWI or DUI convictions on their record will face harsher penalties and a much longer period of time for having the Ignition Interlock device installed on their car. Second time DWI offenders, or those with one DWI conviction on their record already, face penalties that include:

  • Jail Sentence of Five Days or 30 Days of Community Service
  • Fines Between $500 and $5,000
  • Minimum One Year Driver’s License Suspension
  • DWI Interlock Requirement For At Least 1 Year

Third time New York DWI offenders, or those with two DWI convictions on their record, face penalties including:

  • Jail Sentence of 10 Days or 60 Days of Community Service
  • Fines Between $500 and $10,000
  • Minimum Six Year Driver’s License Suspension
  • NY Ignition Interlock Required For At Least 2 Years for Driver’s License Reinstatement

What is the Implied Consent Law for a DWI Offense Charge in New York?

The state of New York, like other states in the country, enforces “implied consent”– under these particular DWI laws, all drivers in the state of New York automatically consent to having chemical testing performed to determine blood alcohol content level. Should during a DWI arrest a driver refuse to take the sobriety tests, they are subject to penalties that could include a fine and automatic NY driver’s license suspension, and having to install the Ignition Interlock device to be able to get a license back. For a first-time DWI offense driver and those who refuse the blood or Breathalyzer tests – they will have a driver’s license suspended for one full year, and repeat offenders, or those who refused testing in the last five years, will have an 18-month license suspension period.

What is an Ignition Interlock Device and How Does It Work With New NY DWI Laws?

Using an Ignition Interlock device in New York as a means to have driving privileges reinstated, is a likely requirement after an driver’s DWI offense conviction. An IID is a device that works very much like the Breathalyzer device used by law enforcement officers. The DWI Interlock device is installed in offender vehicles and possibly any work vehicle or company car that is registered to those offenders. Before individuals can start their car, they will need to provide a breath sample by blowing into the Interlock device. Should the sample be below the predetermined BAC, the vehicle starts.
Generally, the Ignition Interlock device is calibrated with a BAC threshold of 0.02 percent. Should the breath sample given be at or above this threshold, the vehicle does not start. Additionally, IIDs can be set to require random retests while the vehicle is in motion – should the retest sample be above the predetermined threshold, the device sets off an alarm that continues until the vehicle is turned off. Also, the event of the high breath sample reading is logged in the device’s archives. The device does not, however, automatically turn the vehicle off while the vehicle is in motion.

When is Having to Install an Ignition Interlock Device Required in the State of New York?

Under New York state law, the authorization of installation and use of an Ignition Interlock can be ordered as a condition of reinstatement for an offender’s driving privileges after a DWI conviction. While some states only authorize the use of an Interlock for certain DWI and DUI offenders, usually repeat or habitual offenders, the state of New York makes this option available for all convicted DWI drivers regardless of their previous offenses or record.

Who is Responsible for Paying for All the Costs of the NY Ignition Interlock Device?

In almost all NY DWI convictions where drivers are authorized to get an Ignition Interlock put on their car, it is the offender’s responsibility to pay for the installation, maintenance, and removal of the device. Individuals using this method to have their driver’s license reinstated should expect to pay about $100 to have the device installed as well as between $75 and $125 a month in lease payments fees. It is important to keep in mind these figures are just rough estimates of cost, and all DWI Interlock providers charge different amounts – some providers even offer free IID installation.

What is the Process of Having to Get an Ignition Interlock Device Installed in New York?

Once a driver has been ordered by the court to install and use an Ignition Interlock in NY, they need to contact a state approved provider to lease the device. State approved Interlock providers can be found across the state of New York, and a full listing can be found on the New York Criminal Justice Services website. In order for the use of the Ignition Interlock device to be valid and for offenders to have their driver’s license reinstated, they need to ensure they are leasing the device from an approved provider as well as having it professionally installed.

After NY DWI offenders have leased the IID from an approved provider, they also need to have the device professionally installed to remain within DWI Interlock guidelines. Once this is completed, it is possible individuals need to report back to the judge, court, their probation officer, the DMV, or another entity in order to prove they have leased and installed the device. In some cases, offenders need to provide a copy of their lease agreement with the IID provider as well as a copy of the receipt of the device’s installation. Most NY drivers are aware of how strict the new laws for DWI have become, and we understand how serious the issue is for the cost and fees of the Interlock requirement are, and completely realize why one of the first concerns people charged with a DWI offense in NY have is “do I need to get an Ignition Interlock device put on my car?” Once a New York Ignition Interlock attorney reviews a driver’s particular arrest information online with us, they will then be able to discuss with a drive any possible options for how to avoid having to get and install an Ignition Interlock in:

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