Ignition Interlock Devices – What you need to know

In 2010 the OWI/DUI laws in Wisconsin became more strict regarding fines, jail and the requirement of ignition interlock devices (IID).  In Wisconsin the law now states that if you are convicted of an OWI – 1st offense and if your blood/breath alcohol concentration (BAC) is found to be at or above 0.15 then the Court must order that you have an IID installed in any vehicle that you own or operate for a period of 12 months.  If you are convicted of an OWI – 2nd offense or above, then you must have an IID installed no matter what your BAC is and the period must be a minimum of 12 months, but the maximum IID period can be as high as the period of time that your license is revoked for, which could be several year.

An IID is a device which is professionally installed in your vehicle and requires the driver to blow air into the device in order for the vehicle to start.  If a certain amount of alcohol is detected on the driver’s breath (usually more than 0.02 BAC), then the vehicle will not start.  There is usually a monthly fee for this device.

As mentioned earlier, if the Court is required to order the IID for a person convicted of OWI, the IID must be installed in any vehicle that the convicted individual owns or operates.  Often, people own multiple cars and/or spouses will own two or more vehicles with each vehicle titled in each spouses name.  If this is the case, then you would need to have an IID installed in each car.  People also are often required to drive employer owned vehicles as a part of their job.  If that is the case, the employer owned vehicle would need to be equipped with an IID in order for the OWI convicted employee to drive that vehicle.

The IID requirement does not go into effect until a person is actually convicted of the OWI.  However, if that conviction occurs and you are subject to the IID requirement, then you will not be able to get an occupational driver’s license until you first have an IID installed in each vehicle that is titled or registered in your name through the Department of Transportation and the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Finally, if you are convicted of a 2nd offense OWI or above, and if you are ordered to serve a period of time in jail, you may be required to have the IID installed in your vehicle and show proof of that installation to the jail in order for the jail to release you on Huber work release.  However, this can depend on the county in which you are convicted.  Therefore, if you are charged with an OWI, you should contact an experienced OWI attorney right away.

You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to legal advice from an attorney or other professional legal service provider.  If you have any specific questions about any legal matter you should consult you attorney or other professional legal services provider.  You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information on this website. 

The law firm of Simon & Feldhausen, LLC is a Green Bay law office made up of Green Bay attorneys/lawyers who are experienced in the areas of OWI/DUI/DWI and how those charges can impact a person’s employment, freedom, driver’s license, and other areas of a person’s life.