If you are convicted of driving under the influence in Arizona, you may be ordered to have an ignition interlock device on your vehicle. This device requires that you breathe into it at specified intervals to prove that you are not intoxicated. Failure to do so could result in further penalties or result in your vehicle being unable to start.
Not all DUI convictions lead to the requirement of interlock installation. It is important that you understand the local laws to know what kind of consequences you may face for your conviction. Here are five Arizona ignition interlock laws you need to know:
1. Inability to Renew Vehicle Registration
Your DUI can result in more penalties besides losing your driver’s license or having to drive with restrictions. You may also lose your ability to renew your vehicle’s registration, which can impact your ability to drive.
The Arizona Motor Vehicle Department will not renew your vehicle registration if you have been ordered to use an ignition interlock device and have not been compliant. It will also prevent a title transfer until you are compliant with the order. That means that you cannot drive or even sell your car. The only way to get around this is to comply with the order to use the IID.
2. Duration of the Ignition Interlock Program
Exactly how long you will have to have an ignition interlock device on your vehicle depends on the details of your DUI case.
For a first offense, you are only required to have the device for 12 months. However, if you have a “super extreme” BAC level of .20 or higher, you will have to have the device for 18 months. Even “extreme” cases with a BAC level between .15 and .199 only have to have the device for 12 months.
For a second offense, you are still looking at only 12 months unless you have a “super extreme” case, and then you’ll be ordered to the typical 18 months.
For an aggravated DUI, you will have to have the device for at least 24 months.
3. Eligibility for Six-Month Deferral
If you are convicted of a DUI and are sentenced to getting an ignition interlock device, you will have to have it for a minimum of 12 months. However, you may be eligible to get a deferral of six months if you meet certain criteria.
To be eligible, you must:
- Be sentenced for a first offense
- Complete a 16-hour alcohol-education program
- Maintain a functioning ignition interlock device for at least six months
- Do not attempt to drive drunk
- Submit all compliance information in a timely manner
- You will not be eligible for this deferment if you were charged with an “extreme” DUI and had an excessive blood-alcohol content at the time of your arrest.
4. License Revocation
The ignition interlock device allows you to drive in some cases even if your license is revoked.
If you are convicted of an extreme or super extreme DUI, your license will be revoked, not suspended. You can apply for a new license after the period of revocation is over and your driving record has been investigated. Until then, you may be able to drive on a restricted license with an interlock installation.
5. Special Ignition Interlock Restricted Drivers License
When you are ordered to use an ignition interlock on your car, you may also need to get a special ignition interlock restricted drivers license, or SIIRDL. You don’t have to get the license to be eligible for using the device, but you do need to check to see if you must have the license once you get the device. For example, you would need to have an SIIRDL if your license was revoked but not if it was suspended.
The SIIRDL allows you to drive between the following places only:
- Treatment facility
- Office of your probation officer
- Doctor or other healthcare professional