Ignition Interlock Device Q&A

ignition_interlock_lawyer_massachusettsQuestion: 1st OUI-8/23/93 2nd OUI 12/20/05 completed all inpatient and outpatient requirements. Was issued Cinderella (hardship license) in 2006. Due to bankruptcy, divorce and repossession I was unable to complete interlock time frame. I have not driven since 2007 and would like to appear before the Board of Appeals to inquire if my interlock requirement can be waived or a penalty other than interlock can be imposed (lengthy Cinderella, time frame etc).

Answer: No. Melanie’s Law requires that a driver use the ignition interlock device while on a hardship license and for 2 years after removal of the hardship hours. The Registry makes no exceptions to this rule.

Question: I have a questions-concern. I have not had any issues or tickets while driving but I was wondering is there any chance in the near future that I could appeal for a full time license before the projected length of suspension time which I believe is another three years plus two more with interlock device and a full time license. Also I just spoke to the people at ADS Interlock device and they’re telling me that the RMV is slapping another $30.00 per month for administrator fees on top of the already $85.00 to the Device company and $30 to the monthly download service fee = $115.00 a month plus the new $30.00 making it $145.00 that seems an awful lot for the next 5 years or so.

I would appreciate if you get back to me with anything you might know on how they are handling these.

Answer: Unfortunately, ignition interlock device fees are non-negotiable and there is nothing that can be done in this situation. Effective 02-15-13 a $ 30.00 monthly fee is in place to help finance the cost associated with administering the Ignition Interlock Program.The fee is imposed per IID customer and not for each IID equipped vehicle.

Question: I currently have the Interlock Device in my car and have been paying the monthly “calibration” fee of $91.00 per month. Today when I went for the monthly calibration of the device I was informed that beginning March 1, 2013 the RMV will be charging an extra $30.00 monthly fee that will go directly to the RMV. I have not been able to find anything about this online from the RMV but most importantly I’m wondering about the legality of this? I paid thousands of dollars in fees to the Registry over 3 years ago to reinstate my license (hardship) – my fees have been paid. How can they institute a new fee? I could almost understand it for someone that is new to the program but as I mentioned, I already paid the fee’s that were written. Any information and/or help that you may be able to give would be appreciated. I can’t believe that I am the only person thinking along these lines.  I do hope to hear from someone soon.

Answer: See above.

Question: I have failed my third rolling retest in less than two months. I started my car fine as it was a snowy commute home after going to an AA meeting.  I had to use my wiper fluid because I couldn’t see as ice and snow was building up on my windshield.  I didn’t want to get into an accident so I used the wiper fluid.  Then the rolling re test came and it said I blew a .36!  I then went to the police department and got a breathalyzer from them that said I blew a .000.  I have a printout and the Sgt. on duty made a log entry as well and gave me his card.

Answer: The client here did the right thing. He proactively took steps to show that the alcohol readings were not due to consumed alcohol. Instead, the readings were likely due to the client having inhaled the vapors from the windshield washer fluid which contains Methanol, which is an alcohol. I instructed the client to write a letter to the Ignition Interlock Unit of the Registry of Motor Vehicles, documenting in detail what happened. The Ignition Interlock Unit of the RMV does a very good job in determining whether alcohol readings are consistent with consumed alcohol or due to some other case. However, the burden is on the IID user to provide exculpatory information.

Question: I got my first DUI in New Hampshire when I was attending College. I reinstated my license and completed all I had to for punishments and reinstated my license in both states. After a while, years and years I got a second DUI in Massachusetts, I obviously had a problem with alcohol. I payed all my dues and completed ALL requirements of classes to my suspension. I have not had a sip of alcohol in FIVE years, also I never got in any bit of trouble since that 2nd DUI. It has been almost eight years since that second DUI. I have moved on with my life and I am now 8 months pregnant. I need to drive again and reinstate my license in Massachusetts. I know of the IID device, that sounds so expensive as well as scary to  me due to all its regulations. What is your advice please? If I move to Connecticut can I obtain a drivers license there. I am all cleared with Mass. Registry but would it be easier to just move to CT.? I know this is a shot in the dark, but I will please appreciate any help or advice at all you can give me PLEASE!

Answer: The Registry requires interlock for all repeat offenders who are reinstating on or after January 1, 2006, the effective date of the ignition interlock portion of Melanie’s Law. In some cases, it may be possible to get a non-resident IID waiver. However, if you apply for and are granted a waiver from the ignition interlock requirement, you cannot drive in Massachusetts. The only way that you will ever be able to legally operate in Massachusetts is to have the IID installed in your vehicle for at least 24 months, there are no exceptions to this mandatory requirement.

Question: had 2 DUIs in 2009 never was stopped for drunk driving just admitted to it they where both in 2009 months from each other i am attempting to get my license back I am taking the NSC driver course on Saturday its already been paid for my question is do I still need a breathalyzer installed in my car since this was almost 4 years ago to date that I was stopped twice once for insurance issues and once for non payment of court fees because I was unemployed as I was a CDL truck driver back then.

Answer: Pursuant to Melanie’s Law, you are IID required.

Question: I live in Texas and I am on probation for my 4th DWI. I have had an interlock device for the 13 months and have never had a violation nor a warning; however, for the first time, I received a WARN and did not know what it meant…thinking that the machine was faulty…so rather than starting the vehicle I immediately called SMART START. My daughter has used hand sanitizer as we do quite often in the car but apparently this time it affected the blower.

I am concerned as to what my consequences will be when I plainly state the truth–because I know they have “hear it all” so to speak. Will this result in a probation violation?

Answer: Not being admitted to practice law in Texas, I am unable to answer this question. However, the most popular brand of hand sanitizer contains 67% ethylanol which is the exact same alcohol found in alcoholic beverages. I have successfully defended clients who have had ignition interlock violations caused by hand sanitizer.