Information on Ignition Interlock Device Laws in the Magnolia State of MS
Biloxi, Gulfport, Oxford, Hattiesburg, Jackson, and all other cities in the state of Mississippi have the same MS Ignition Interlock laws when it comes to drinking and driving and DUI/DWI charges. Any drivers with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or above will be arrested and charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI). Should drivers be convicted of this charge, they face a number of penalties that likely include monetary fines, a driver’s license suspension, spending time in jail, and having to use an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) as a condition of having their driver’s license reinstated after or during their license suspension. In order to find potential ways of how to prevent having to get an Ignition Interlock and avoid a suspended driver’s license in Mississippi, a person needs to have their DUI or DWI arrest examined online with us as soon as possible by a local MS DUI lawyer.
A blood alcohol content level of 0.08 percent is often the standard across all states when it comes to penalizing those who drink and drive – this is due to research performed by the government that found that all individuals are too impaired to drive when their BAC reaches this level. Additionally, individuals who are minors, or under the age of 21, can be charged with DUI should their BAC be 0.02 percent or more, and those driving commercial vehicles can be charged with DUI should their BAC exceed 0.04 percent in MS. These offenders face the same or similar penalties as traditional DUI offenders.
What Are the Penalties for Driving Under the Influence in Mississippi?
As mentioned, there are a number of penalties MS DUI and DWI offenders face should they be convicted in court. These punishments are meant to discourage offenders as well as other individuals from participating in drinking and driving behaviors. Those on their first DUI offense in Mississippi likely will face penalties and punishments that include:
- Up to 48 Hours in Jail
- Fines Between $250 and $1,000
- MS Driver’s License Suspension of 90 Days
- Installing an Ignition Interlock Device
Second time offenders, or those who have had a DUI conviction within the last five years, face harsher penalties. Those on their second DUI offense in MS likely face penalties and punishments that include:
- Five Days to Up to One Year in Jail
- Fines Between $600 and $1,500
- Driver’s License Suspension of Two Years
- Installation and Use of an Ignition Interlock as a Requirement for Mississippi Driver’s License Reinstatement
Third time offenders in Mississippi, or those who have had two DUI or DWI convictions within the last five years, face even harsher penalties. Those on their third DUI offense likely face penalties and punishments that include:
- One to Five Years in Jail
- Fines Between $2,000 and $5,000
- Driver’s License Suspension of Five Years
- Installation and Use of a DUI car Breathalyzer Interlock as a Requirement for License Reinstatement
Implied Consent DUI/DWI Law in Mississippi
Like most other states in the US, the state of Mississippi enforces an “implied consent law.” Under this law, drivers who are issued a license in the state automatically consent to having chemical testing performed after a DUI arrest should their blood alcohol content level come into question. In most cases, this testing includes Breathalyzer, urine, and/or blood testing. On top of the likelihood a driver will have to get an Ignition Interlock for any DUI offense in MS, those drivers who refuse to have testing completed face a fine as well as an automatic license suspension:
1. First Time DUI & DWI Offenders: 90 Day MS Driver’s License Suspension
2. Second DUI Offense:
- If First Offense was DUI – One Year Mississippi Driver’s License Suspension
- If First Offense was Refusal – 90 Day Driver’s License Suspension
3. Third Time DUI/DWI Offenders:
- If First/Second Offense was DUI – One Year Driver’s License Suspension
What is an Ignition Interlock Device and How Does It Work in Mississippi?
A DUI Interlock device in MS, sometimes referred to as a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID), is essentially a car Breathalyzer that is installed in an offender’s car, usually on the dashboard. This device requires vehicle operators to give a breath sample into the device’s mouthpiece before the vehicle can start. Should the breath sample show a BAC above the preprogrammed level, the device prevents the vehicle from starting – most often this level is set at 0.02 percent.
An Ignition Interlock device is used to interrupt the signal taken from the vehicle’s ignition to its starter. This signal remains stopped until the Interlock is provided with a breath sample falling below the preprogrammed level, and only when this occurs does the vehicle start as normal. Additionally, Mississippi Ignition Interlock devices also will require random samples after the vehicle has been started – this helps to prevent anyone other than the offender from providing a sample in order for the vehicle to start. Should a random sample fall above the preprogrammed level, the event is flagged and an alarm sounds until the car is turned off.
When is Using an Ignition Interlock Device Required in the State of Mississippi?
Criminal courts in the state of Mississippi authorize the installation, use, and maintenance of a DUI/DWI Interlock in specific situations as a condition of having an offender’s driver’s license reinstated. Courts authorize the use of an Ignition Interlock in MS for:
Drivers seeking to avoid a driver’s license suspension for first or second conviction
First time offenders required to use the Ignition Interlock device for 90 days
Second time offenders required to use the DUI Interlock for one year
Third time MS DUI offenders required to use the IID for three years
Who is Responsible for Paying for all the costs of the MS DUI Ignition Interlock Device?
In almost all of the DUI cases in Mississippi, offenders are held responsible for paying any and all costs associated with using the Ignition Interlock for DUI and DWI charges. These costs usually include leasing the device, having it installed, paying for needed maintenance, and removing the device when the usage period has ended. For a first DUI offense conviction, a person should expect to pay around $100 to have the device professionally installed as well as between $75 and $120 a month in lease payments. It is important to keep in mind these are rough prices, and costs and fees of the Ignition Interlock device can vary across the state.
What is the Process of Obtaining an Ignition Interlock Device in Mississippi?
When DUI or DWI offenders have been authorized to use an Interlock device in MS, they are often given a window of time in which they need to get the IID installed. First, they need to contact a state approved Ignition Interlock provider in order to lease the device. The Mississippi Department of Public Safety features a full list of approved Ignition Interlock providers on its DMV website, and these companies can be found across the state. Additionally, once they have leased the device, it needs to be professionally installed in the driver’s car.
Once the Ignition Interlock has been leased and installed in Mississippi for a DUI or DWI conviction, it is not uncommon for offenders to have to report back to either the court, their judge, their probation officer, and/or the MS DMV to inform them the process has been completed. In some cases, MS DUI and DWI offenders will have to provide proof – this usually includes providing the appropriate authority with a copy of the lease agreement for the IID as well as a dated receipt showing the device was professionally installed. When a Mississippi Ignition Interlock lawyer reviews a driver’s own DUI arrest details online with us, they can then be in a proper position to discuss any possible ways of defense for how to avoid having to get an Ignition Interlock device installed in:
[column col=”1/4″]Adams County
Jefferson Davis County
Pearl River County
Bay St Louis
Gulf Park Estates
Snow Lake Shores