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Does TN have an ignition interlock law?

On Behalf of | Mar 19, 2020 | Drunk Driving |

While driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal in all 50 states, all states have different laws. It is important to understand the difference between them if you are looking at a DUI charge.

Tennessee is one of the states that has an ignition interlock law. According to FindLaw, receiving an order to install an ignition interlock device is at the judge’s discretion for the first DUI offense and then mandatory if the driver gets 2 DUI convictions within 5 years. 

What is an ignition interlock device? 
An ignition interlock device is a device installed inside of your car and affects the ignition switch of the vehicle. Essentially, with an ignition interlock device in the car, the driver will need to breathe into the device in order to prove that he or she is not under the influence of alcohol. It acts as a miniature breathalyzer test. While the car is in motion, the ignition interlock device will occasionally sound off, requiring the driver to breathe into the device again. This ensures that the driver has not consumed alcohol after starting the vehicle. 

How do I get an ignition interlock device?

If the judge requires you to get an ignition interlock device for your vehicle, you will need to go through private channels to install one. Ignition interlock devices May cost hundreds or thousands of dollars a year to maintain, and the vehicle driver is responsible for this cost. 

The length of time that you need to have an ignition interlock device depends upon the will of the judge and also the severity of your DUI charge.