Kentucky Ignition Interlock Devices for Certain DUI Convictions

Friday, March 3, 2017 by Kristin Russell

As a DUI attorney, I get a lot of questions about the installation of Ignition Interlock Devices (IID). While these devices have been optional for DUI defendants for many years, the Kentucky Legislature made the device mandatory in 2015 in certain cases.

What is an Ignition Interlock Device (IID)?

An Ignition Interlock Device means a device, certified by the Transportation Cabinet for use in this Commonwealth, that connects a motor vehicle ignition system or motorcycle ignition system to a breath alcohol analyzer and prevents a motor vehicle ignition or motorcycle ignition from starting, and from continuing to operate, if a driver's breath alcohol concentration exceeds 0.02, as measured by the device. KRS 189A.005

Is an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) mandatory when convicted of DUI in Kentucky?

In 2015, Kentucky mandated Ignition Interlock Devices for those convicted of DUI 1st offense with an aggravating circumstance for the first time in a ten (10) year period, as well as DUI 2nd offense and any subsequent offenses in a ten (10) year period. An Ignition Interlock Device is not mandatory for those convicted of a DUI 1st offense without an aggravating circumstance. A defendant may also petition the court for an Ignition Interlock Device while the case is pending if the defendant's license is suspended pretrial.

How long will the Ignition Interlock Device (IID) be on my vehicle?

An Ignition Interlock Device shall be installed for a period of six (6) months if any of the following aggravating circumstances were present while the defendant was operating or in physical control of a motor vehicle: 1) operating a motor vehicle in excess of thirty (30) miles per hour above the speed limit; 2) operating a motor vehicle in the wrong direction on a limited access highway; 3) operating a motor vehicle that causes an accident resulting in death or serious physical injury; 4) operating a motor vehicle while the alcohol concentration in the operator's blood or breath is 0.15 or more; 5) refusing to submit to any test or tests of one's blood, breath, or urine requested by an officer; and 6) operating a motor vehicle that is transporting a passenger under the age of twelve (12) years old. KRS 189A.010; KRS 189A.340

An Ignition Interlock Device shall be installed for a period of twelve (12) months for a DUI 2nd offense or for a period of thirty (30) months for a third or subsequent DUI offense. KRS 189A.340

How do I obtain an Ignition Interlock Device (IID)?

Your attorney will prepare the paperwork to petition the court either before trial (if your driver's license is suspended pretrial) or after your conviction (typically at the time of your guilty plea) or acquittal. You then must take the Court Order authorizing you to apply for an Ignition Interlock License and Device with proof of insurance and a valid vehicle registration to a Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) field office. You must also complete a KYTC Ignition Interlock Application and pay a non-refundable application fee. If the KYTC deems that you are eligible for an Ignition Interlock License and Device, you will have to contact an ignition interlock device provider for installation of the device. Once the device is installed, you must take the Ignition Interlock Certificate of Installation provided to you by the installer to the DMV office in your county in order to obtain an Ignition Interlock License.

How is my driver's license restricted by an Ignition Interlock Device?

The Legislature intended to use the ignition interlock licensing system to replace the previous hardship license system. Instead of waiting for the minimum suspension period to lapse before you can apply for a hardship license, you can apply immediately for an Ignition Interlock License. An Ignition Interlock License permits a person to drive only motor vehicles equipped with a functioning IID. KRS 189A.005

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to call our office. Each situation is unique, and we are happy to answer any questions you may have.