Life as a driver with an ignition interlock device on your car is anything but pleasant. Being required to take a breath test every time you need to go to a meeting or run an errand is not only inconvenient, but it can also be downright embarrassing. Fortunately, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. By complying with your requirements and educating yourself about the interlock removal process, you can ensure that your device is removed as soon as possible. Below are eight things you need to know about ignition interlock removal in Colorado.
1) An approved vendor must handle your interlock removal
You should never attempt to remove an ignition interlock device on your own. For safe removal, you should contact a vendor that is approved by the State of Colorado. There are currently four vendors who are authorized to install or remove devices:
- Intoxalock. (844-611-3710)
- Smart Start, Inc. (866-348-4294)
- LifeSafer Ignition Interlock. (800-475-5490)
- Guardian Interlock. (800-499-0994)
2) You may qualify for early removal
If you are a first-time DUI offender in Colorado, you could be eligible for early ignition interlock removal. Also known as early reinstatement, early removal could enable you to qualify for device removal after just four months of 100% compliance with requirements.
To be eligible for early removal, you must be a Colorado resident who was at least twenty-one years old at the time of your DUI violation. You also must meet certain blood alcohol content (BAC) guidelines. If you are unsure about whether you may qualify for early removal, you can contact a DUI attorney or call Colorado Driver Services at 303-205-5613.
3) You must service your interlock device until it is removed
The State of Colorado requires interlock devices to be serviced every sixty days up until the day it is removed. If you fail to report for device servicing, you may face license suspension with no driving until you comply with all requirements. Your interlock device installer can provide you with a list of service locations in Colorado.
4) The removal process only takes a few minutes
On the date of your device removal appointment, you should plan to be onsite for approximately 30 minutes. This will allow time for a review of your paperwork and give your interlock provider time to safely remove your device. Once your device is removed, there will be no evidence that the device was ever installed on your vehicle.
5) You must present an unrestricted license prior to removal
Some people mistakenly think they can have their device removed as soon as they successfully complete the final day of driving with their interlock device installed. In reality, you can only receive credit for your interlock program when you complete the requirements and present your unrestricted license. Securing your unrestricted license can take anywhere from several days to a couple of weeks, so be sure to plan accordingly.
6) You should be prepared to pay a small fee for the removal of your device
Before you head to your removal appointment, check in with your interlock device provider to inquire about the cost of having your device removed. Removal fees vary by vendor and are subject to change, so be sure to confirm the amount in advance.
7) You may have to keep your device installed longer than planned
Your ignition interlock provider will maintain data regarding your device. For instance, they will keep track of your total number of breath tests and their results. If this data shows that you failed a breath test three times in one year, you may be prohibited from removing your interlock device on your original removal eligibility date. Your license suspension may also be extended.
8) You can choose to keep a device installed on your vehicle
Many people are surprised to learn that some interlock providers offer a voluntary ignition interlock program to drivers who want to continue to hold themselves accountable for safe driving behavior. Voluntary programs are often available at a lower rate and involve fewer restrictions, creating a more pleasant experience for participating drivers.
What is the top thing to remember about interlock devices?
Colorado’s Ignition Interlock Program plays an important role in helping DUI offenders continue to drive safely on a restricted basis. The key to a successful ignition interlock experience is to comply with all requirements outlined by the State of Colorado. And the best way to ensure you abide by program requirements is to hire a DUI attorney. A DUI lawyer can help you determine whether you qualify for early removal and can ensure that you meet all requirements in a timely fashion.
A DUI attorney can also help you with any other legal matters related to your DUI. Whether you are facing your first DUI or your third, an attorney can help you secure the best possible outcome in your DUI case.