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Floridas Ignition Interlock Program: Costs You Will Pay

If you get convicted of DUI in Florida, there is a good chance your car will pay for it: by getting an ignition interlock attached to it. Any court can order an interlock for a DUI offender, even if it is your first conviction. However, you will definitely be required to get one if your blood alcohol content (BAC) is higher than .15 percent or if you have a minor in the car with you. And you and your interlock will be together for six months. If you are convicted of a second DUI, you will have an interlock for a year. A second conviction with a BAC higher than .15 percent or a third conviction? Two years. Four or more convictions? Get ready for five years of interlock.

Expensive Ignition Interlock

In addition to the inconvenience of the interlock, it costs money, too. First, start with the $12 interlock fee. Add an extra $79 for installation. Then you can factor in $67.50 per month for monitoring and calibration. For the five-year program, you will pay a cool $4,050. Even for the six-month program, your wallet will be $405 lighter. Oh, and add in a $100 deposit or a $5 per month insurance charge. At least you get the deposit back when you are finished. Now if the court determines that you are indigent or unable to pay the fees, it may make some adjustments. But do not count on it.

The interlock will prevent your vehicle from starting if your blood alcohol is .05 percent or higher. Note that this is lower than the legal limit of .08 percent. The data that is reported through the interlock is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The interlock is also capable of doing random retests while the car is running. Additionally your license will be reissued (all licenses are suspended for DUI in Florida) with a P restriction, which stands for "Probation-Interlock." Therefore, if you are driving a car other than your own and you are pulled over by law enforcement authorities, they will quickly be able to determine that you should not be driving a non-interlock-equipped vehicle.