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Can An Ignition Interlock Device Be Installed On Any Motor Vehicle?

I have heard stories out of New Mexico where someone was willing to install an ignition interlock device on a motorcycle. The problem is that they are dangerous. It throws off the balance of the motorcycle and they are not meant to be installed on motorcycles. You are not going to hear the beeping that occurs due to this ignition interlock devices when they are on a motorcycle. They are just a huge liability and so realistically you are not going to have one installed on the motorcycle. There are some people who only operate motorcycles and realistically those people will have to install an ignition interlock device on a car or truck. They are going to have to purchase one, even if it is a junkyard vehicle, to install the ignition interlock device.

They are not going to be allowed to operate the motorcycle. Every now and again I get calls from people that say, “I’m about to ride an ATV. I’m going hunting” or, “I’m going to be on a jet ski”, or, “I am going to operate a boat”. “Do I need to have an ignition interlock device on this?” In reality, because the way the laws are written, a boat and jet ski is fine. Technically an ATV is a motor vehicle and so that is the type of thing that needs to have an ignition interlock device if someone is going to operate it, even though realistically, no one is going to install an ignition interlock device on an ATV and no one wants an ignition interlock device installed on an ATV. So, there is what the law requires and then there is the reality of the situation.

Chances are if someone is going out hunting on an ATV, are they going to encounter a police officer? Is the police officer going to ask for the license? Is the police officer going to just say, “This is an ATV. This is a motor vehicle, you’re supposed to have an ignition interlock device according to your license”. Chances are that is not going to happen but it can, legally it can, someone can be arrested for operating a motor vehicle without an ignition interlock device installed and this type of a situation also applies to golf carts. Golf carts are a motor vehicle. I am not exactly sure, I will have to double check what the law says, but for some reason, I am thinking that the ignition interlock device may only be required on public property.

I am not sure if you can be convicted of driving without the ignition interlock device if you are solely on private property but situations come up all the time and you got to look closer to the law to see how they really apply.

What If Someone’s Vehicle Has Maintenance Issues? Will That Be Considered A Violation?

This comes up quite often, unfortunately! People need to talk to the ignition interlock device company because sometimes their car needs repairs and the mechanics will end up starting the car and maybe leave it running. Maybe they are getting a smoke check done, there are things that mechanics can do that will all of a sudden turn into violations for you because the mechanic did not want to blow into the ignition interlock device! They do not necessarily care that the device is beeping. What they care about is running a smoke check. The people who are required to have an ignition interlock device need to get in touch with the ignition interlock device company, they need to let them know what is going on.

Every now and again, a person gets into a car accident while driving with an ignition interlock device. Now they need to put that ignition interlock device in a different car because the first car was totaled. It can cause problems and if it is not handled correctly, all of a sudden, they have to start over their ignition interlock device. Even if they were eleven months into a twelve-month ignition interlock device requirements, they may have to start all over again because they ran into a car accident or a mechanic screwed things up for them.

When Is It Time To Have The Interlock Device Removed?

The biggest advice is wait for the letter. I have seen people that have gone in and talked with the Motor Vehicle Division and people from Motor Vehicle Division say, “Oh yes, you have done everything you are supposed to do. Go ahead and uninstall it” or they talk to their ignition interlock device installer and say, “I think I have been doing this for about a year” and the ignition interlock device installer will say, “Your contract is up. Let’s just uninstall it.” But if they did not get that letter from the Motor Vehicle Division telling them to uninstall it, they have just violated and they are going to have to start all over again. I have seen people, for whatever reason, they relied on what people told them as opposed to getting an actual letter from the Motor Vehicle Division telling them they can uninstall it and now they have to do it for another full year.

You always want to keep in touch with the ignition interlock device company. You are going to have to take the vehicle in there, at least once a month to get it properly maintained and so it is important to keep the Motor Vehicle Division updated of your correct address and keep in touch with the ignition interlock device company to make sure that everything is going smoothly. If there are any issues and people complain about the ignition interlock device all the time, tell the ignition interlock device company. Do not just keep driving around on a broken ignition interlock device. You need to tell the folks that installed and that are maintaining it, that there is a problem with the device.

For more information on Interlock Device Installation For Motor Vehicles, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling 480-900-0384 today.

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Brian Douglas Sloan

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“I am one of only a handful of Phoenix DUI Lawyers that focuses solely on DUI Defense representation.”

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