Ignition Interlock Laws in Texas

November 27, 2018

All 50 states have some form of ignition interlock device law, allowing the devices to be installed in vehicles of people convicted of a DUI. According to a study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, ignition interlock devices have led to a 7 percent decrease in the number of fatal drunken driving crashes.

While the installation of ignition interlocks is allowed in every state, the rules of the installation and guidelines are not the same. Partial laws, in roughly half of the states, usually only apply to repeat offenders. Different laws are applied to specific DUI offenders at the discretion of a judge.

For example, in Texas, second-time DUI offenders and first-time offenders with a BAC of .15% or higher must install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle they own or operate. You have to keep the device for one year after the end of the license suspension period too. Texas courts may also require you to have an ignition interlock device in order to reinstate your driving privileges – even after any the license suspension period has ended.

Ignition interlocks are only part of your sentencing requirements. You will still have to serve jail time and probation, pay fines, complete an alcohol treatment / education program, and comply with a period of full license suspension – if not more.

How does it work?

The ignition interlock device is wired into your vehicles ignition system. When you want to start the car, you must blow into the device. The device analyzes the breath-alcohol concentration (BrAC) and if it’s greater than the allowed level, the device prevents the engine from starting.

Use an approved ignition interlock provider.

Drivers must have the device installed by a state-approved installer like Draeger in Texas. You must provide proof of the installation to the court or sentencing authority. You’ll also need the installer to conduct inspections from time to time to maintain compliance. Make sure to get a schedule for these appointments. Missing these appointments can cause your requirement period to start over again.

Costs of an ignition interlock device include payment for the device itself, an installation fee, monitoring or calibrating fees, and a security deposit and/or device insurance fee.

Need help? We are here.

We can help you find the right attorneyfinancial provider, insurancecounseling and more. Just visit myduisolution.com. There are many resources dedicated to helping you stay safe and recover. If you or someone you know needs help with addiction, locate an AA Group here.