Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is one of the most common criminal charges in New York. Despite how frequently people get arrested for and convicted of drunk driving, a surprising number of people don’t understand the penalties.
Many people recognize the risk of license suspension, fines and jail time, but fewer drivers in New York know about the ignition interlock device (IID) program. An IID is a chemical breath test device installed directly into your vehicle. You have to pay for its installation and must use it every single time you start your vehicle. When might the New York courts compel you to install an IID to continue driving?
Any DWI offense will lead to an IID requirement
In some states, only repeat offenders have to worry about the expense and embarrassment of having IIDs in their vehicles after a drunk driving arrest. New York has a stricter approach than many other states. The court typically must order the installation of an IID for anyone convicted of a drunk driving offense. Even a first-time DWI will lead to a sentence that involves mandatory IID installation.
Drivers subject to an IID requirement cannot legally drive a vehicle without one. Typically, they will need to participate in the IID program for at least 12 months before they regain their full driving privileges. If they are caught by police driving a vehicle without an IID, they could go to jail for a year for that offense alone.
Fighting back against a DWI offense may be the best way to avoid the compulsory installation of an IID in your vehicle. It’s wise to seek experienced legal guidance to review your options.