Ignition Interlock

As of July 1, 2011, the ignition interlock device is mandatory for all Minnesota DWI offenders who test at a .16 alcohol concentration or higher and all Minnesota DWI offenders who have a prior DWI conviction or alcohol license revocation within the past 10 years. Refer to chart below. The ignition interlock program originally started as a pilot project in Hennepin and Beltrami Counties. Due to the success of these pilot programs, the State Legislature made the move to mandatory programs in all Minnesota counties. At the time of the pilot project, Minnesota was 1 of 5 states that did not use the ignition interlock device in any capacity.

WHAT IS IGNITION INTERLOCK?

The ignition interlock device sits under the console or dashboard of your car and is connected to a blow tube that looks very much like a cell phone. To start the car equipped with an ignition interlock device, the driver must blow into the tube and hum for a certain period of time. If there is no alcohol detected from the driver’s breath, the car’s ignition will start and is ready for use. However, the driver is not done blowing. As the car is being driven, the device prompts the driver to blow into the tube every 15 minutes. These repeated blows are commonly known as “rolling tests” which make it harder for the driver to cheat the device. Most devices even take pictures of the driver blowing into the device at these 15 minute intervals. While not perfect, these devices are certainly here to stay and preliminary research indicates that recidivism is less than 10 percent.

HOW MUCH DOES THE IGNITION INTERLOCK COST?

The ignition interlock device requires a minimum $90 installation fee plus a $3-5 per day fee while in use, depending on the vendor.

For more information on the interlock program and guidelines for interlock go to MN Department of Public Safety Website

CAUTIONARY NOTE:

One of the requirements for use of the ignition interlock is to provide the Minnesota Department of Public safety a certificate of insurance from your insurance company stating that the policy is non-cancelable for one year. Obviously this requires contacting your insurance company and explaining the situation in order to obtain the certificate of insurance. One preliminary problem with this requirement is that the insurance company, upon learning of the DWI and need for this certificate, may cancel your insurance and force you to look elsewhere for other insurance companies that will provide you with this certificate. While not impossible to find insurance companies willing to do this, it is good to know this ahead of time and plan accordingly if the situation arises.


Type of
Offense

Age

Priors
w/in
10

Priors outside
10

IC Revo. Length

Hard
Revo.

DL Status
w/ Interlock
.08-.15/Drugs/Imp.21+

0

0 or 1

90days15days if no priorsFull DL(optional)
.08-.15/Drugs/Imp.18-20

0

0 or 1

180days15days if no priorsFull DL(optional)
.08-.15/Drugs/Imp.Under
18

0

0 or 1

180days90days if no priorsFull DL(optional)
Refusal18+

0

0 or 1

1year

15days if no priorsFull DL(optional)
RefusalUnder
18

0

0 or 1

1year

90days if no priorsFull DL(optional)

.16+

All

0

0 or 1

1year

N/A

Full DL

.08-.15/Drugs/Imp.

All

0

2

1year

N/A

Full DL

.08-.15/Drugs/Imp.

All

1

0or1

1year

N/A

Full DL

Refusalor.16+

All

0

2

2
years

N/A

Full DL

Refusalor.16+

All

1

0or1

2
years

N/A

Full DL

All

All

0

3

3
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

All

All

1

2

3
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

All

All

2

0or1

3
years*

N/A

Limited1stYr

All

All

3

0

4
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

All

All

0

4+

6
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

All

All

1

3+

6
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

All

All

2

2+

6
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

All

All

3

1+

6
years*

N/A

Limited 1st Yr

* Limited license given only if enrolled in treatment recommended by chem. use assessment.

May convert to full DL privileges with interlock only after having Limited license for one year and completing treatment program.

May convert to full DL w/out interlock only after providing proof of abstinence using interlock or other alcohol monitoring device for period equal to Revo. Length.

Interlock Requirements:

1. Must be 18+

2. Must have device installed in all vehicles driver intends to use for program

3. Must provide proof of insurance coverage for at least one year for all vehicles used in program

4. May only use vehicles w/interlock device installed

5. May use company-owned vehicle w/out interlock device during normal course of work if employer provides written consent


All ConvictionRevos
Are the Same Length as Above Except in the Following Situations:

Under.16/ Drugs/Impaired21+0030days**15days Full DL
(optional)
Refusal21+0090days**15days Full DL
(optional)
Under.16 Marijuana/Imp.21+0130days***N/A Full DL
(optional)
Refusal21+0190days***N/A Full DL
(optional)

**These Revo. Lengths apply instead of IC revo only if driver had no kids in car.

***These Revo. Lengths apply only if the driver wins the current IC or has no IC revo from the current offense.