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Alabama Lags in Ignition Interlock Device Penalty for DUI, But It’s Coming

Posted by Steven Eversole | May 12, 2011 | 0 Comments

Kansas legislators are working toward requiring first time DUI offenders to use ignition interlock devices in their cars, The Wichita Eagle reports. It's a move the Alabama Legislature is also considering.

Lawmakers are constantly making the penalties tougher for drivers convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. And while the crime already comes with a stigma attached, hiring a Birmingham DUI defense attorney who will aggressively fight the charges may save your reputation and even your job.

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In Kansas, lawmakers are close to pushing a bill into law that would require first time DUI offenders to use interlock devices in their cars. Alabama, however, is the only state in the country that doesn't have an ignition interlock device law on the books, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Most states require or allow for an ignition interlock device to be installed for first-time offenders.

An ignition interlock device is like a breathalyzer machine attached to your vehicle. You would be required to blow into a tube in order for the vehicle to start. Otherwise, the ignition is locked so that someone who has consumed alcohol can't start the car simply with a set of car keys.

Under Alabama law, if a driver's blood alcohol content is .08 or above, they can be charged with driving under the influence. A first offense in Alabama could mean suspension of your driver's license and up to a year in jail. And fines, fees and other requirements can make your life difficult.

But Alabama lawmakers haven't stopped there. Bills in the House of Representatives and Senate would require the interlock devices for first-time offenders.

DUI is a politically charged crime that lawmakers love to show constituents they are fighting by increasing penalties. Judges, who are elected, like to show voters they are tough on the crime, too. That's why you need a seasoned attorney willing to go to battle for you.


If you need to speak with a DUI defense attorney in Alabama, contact Eversole Law at 205-981-2450 for a free consultation.

About the Author

Steven Eversole

J.D., Samford University's Cumberland School of Law, Birmingham, Alabama B.A., University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama

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