What you should know about ignition interlock devices in Illinois

If your driver’s license has been suspended because of a DUI, you may be able to continue driving as long as you have a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) in your vehicle. A BAIID works similarly to a Breathalyzer. You need to breathe into it before you can start your vehicle. If it detects at least .025 percent blood alcohol content (BAC), the ignition won’t work. You will also be prompted at random times while driving to breathe into it again.

These devices are carefully monitored by the Office of the Illinois Secretary of State. Therefore, it’s essential not to try to tamper with it or to get someone to blow into it for you. BAIIDs include a camera that takes a photo of the person as they blow into the device.

If this is your first DUI conviction, you’ll need a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP) to drive with a BAIID. However, you still need a BAIID on any vehicle you’re driving. Driving without this device if you’ve been approved for one is a felony. If your license has been suspended and you decide not to get an MDDP and BAIID, it is against the law for you to drive. In fact, it’s a felony to do so.

If this is your second or third DUI conviction (regardless of how far apart the convictions are), you’ll need a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) to drive with a BAIID. You’ll also need an RDP if you’ve had a DUI conviction as well as a suspension related to DUI arrest or two suspensions resulting from arrests for DUI.

People with at least four DUI convictions cannot apply for an RDP until they’ve served at least five years of their license revocations. If they receive an RDP, they will be required to have a BAIID for as long as they continue to drive.

Drivers are responsible for all costs associated with installing and monitoring the BAIID unless they can show that they’re not able to afford them.

If you are considering applying for a permit so that you can have a BAIID installed, it’s essential to understand the terms associated with the permit and the device and the consequences of violating those terms. Your Illinois DUI attorney can provide more information and guidance based on your specific circumstances.