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Is an Ignition Interlock Device Required After a Texas DWI Conviction?

Posted on in DWI

Fairview drunk driving defense attorney

Drunk driving is a serious criminal offense in Texas. When a driver is impaired due to the use of alcohol, controlled substances, or prescription drugs, he or she can face charges of driving while intoxicated (DWI), and a conviction will result in driver’s license suspension or revocation, as well as other consequences, such as being required to pay fines or being sentenced to time in prison. In many cases, drivers will also be ordered to install an ignition interlock device in any vehicles they drive after regaining their driving privileges.

What Is an Ignition Interlock Device?

A breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) is a breathalyzer that measures a person’s blood alcohol content (BAC) and prevents them from operating their vehicle if they have been drinking. A driver will breathe into the BAIID, and if the device registers a BAC that is above a certain limit, the vehicle will not start. In addition to providing a breath sample when initially starting a car, a driver will also be required to measure their BAC at regular intervals, and the device will take a picture of the person to ensure that the vehicle’s driver is the person providing a breath sample. Typically, drivers will be required to pay all costs related to the installation of a BAIID in their vehicle, as well as ongoing maintenance fees.

When Is an Ignition Interlock Device Required?

A first-time DWI conviction in Texas will result in a driver’s license suspension of between 90 days and two years. During the period of suspension, a driver can regain their driving privileges by having a BAIID installed in their vehicle. In these cases, a driver will need to obtain a special restricted driver’s license that will only allow them to operate vehicles equipped with a BAIID. The only exception to this requirement is when a person drives an employer-owned vehicle during the course of their work.

Those who are convicted of a second or subsequent DWI will face a driver’s license suspension of up to two years, and they will typically not be able to regain their driving privileges through the use of a BAIID during the period of suspension. However, a person may apply for an occupational driver’s license that will allow them to drive for up to 12 hours each day for work-related purposes, to attend school, or to meet family-related obligations. An occupational license may restrict a person from traveling to certain places or using specific routes, and it may also require a person to use an ignition interlock device. Following the reinstatement of their license after the period of suspension, a person will be required to use a BAIID in all vehicles they drive for one year.

Contact Our Frisco DWI Defense Attorneys

If you have been arrested for DWI, the Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C. can help you defend against these serious charges. If your driver’s license has been suspended, we can help you determine your options for regaining your driving privileges through the use of a BAIID or by obtaining an occupational driver’s license. To learn how we can help with your case, call our skilled Allen drunk driving defense lawyers at 469-333-3333 to set up a complimentary consultation.

 

Sources:

https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/TN/htm/TN.521.htm

https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/PE/htm/PE.49.htm

https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/CR/htm/CR.42A.htm

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