Can You Avoid the Ignition Interlock Device after an Arizona DUI?

dui ignition interlock deviceThe installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) is a common consequence of committing a DUI in Arizona. This device, however, comes with associated costs and it requires maintenance. As a result, many people wonder whether it’s possible to avoid the IID installation in the aftermath of a DUI conviction.

When Is the IID Required?

Currently, all Arizona drivers found guilty of DUI will be required to have an IID installed in their car.

The law doesn’t make an exception for those who are found guilty of a DUI due to taking drugs or medications. While this provision doesn’t make a lot of sense, you’ll still have to install the IID in the car if your DUI is caused by prescription medications.

The initial requirement is for a one-year installation. Depending on the circumstances, the driver could ask for a revision and the removal of the IID after six months.

If you think that you can refrain from installing the IID after it has been ordered by court, you should think again. While most states do not perform regular compliance checks, Arizona is an exception. Authorities could carry unannounced inspections to find out if drivers are complying with the court-ordered measures. The consequences of failing to install the ignition interlock device or tampering with it could be serious.

Is There Any Situation in Which You Can Refrain Getting the IID?

Ignoring court orders isn’t an option but is there any legal possibility for avoiding the installation of the ignition interlock device?

Even if you promise that you’re not going to drive a car for the coming one year, you’ll still need to get and install the IID. According to A.R.S. 28-1464, you need to have the IID even if you decide to borrow a car or use a rent-a-car service. You cannot be 100 percent confident that you’re not going to drive in the coming year for the purpose of avoiding the IID expenses.

The only exception is a substantial emergency. This is a situation in which a person can drive a car that lacks an IID (to get to a hospital, for example).

Not only is it impossible to avoid the requirement, you will need to have an IID in all of the vehicles that you operate. In the absence of IIDs, a person found guilty of DUI could be banned from operating a vehicle altogether.

There is only one exception to the IID requirement.

Currently, it’s possible for people charged with DUI after taking drugs to avoid the installation of an ignition interlock device. This is possible, however, only if the person is convicted of a DUI under a certain law.

The exception is listed in A.R.S. 28-1381 (A)(3). A person will be freed from having to install an ignition interlock device if they commit a DUI after taking a drug defined in A.R.S. 13-3401 or their metabolites. In addition, this should be a first drug-related offense with no prior DUI convictions in the previous 84 months.

To benefit from the opportunity, the person should also be committing solely a misdemeanor rather than a felony DUI.

As of 2018, judges have more control over when to mandate the installation of IIDs. The decision is left to their discretion but you shouldn’t count on leniency, especially if the charges come with aggravating factors.

To sum it up, getting out of the DUI process in Arizona without having to install an ignition interlock device is going to be very difficult. Your DUI attorney could negotiate the best conditions, if they have sufficient experience and knowledge of the newest legal developments. If you’re charged with DUI, get in touch with your lawyer as soon as possible to determine the best course of action.

Click here for more information on ignition interlock and Arizona DUI laws.