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New DUI Law Affects Pre-Trial Diversion

Ignition Interlock will now be mandatory for all DUI cases

Effective July 1, 2018, under Act 2018-517 (which revises 32-5A-191, Code of Alabama) all DUI pre-trial diversion programs will require an ignition interlock for six months, or the duration of the program, whichever is longer. Prior to this new law, the ignition interlock was not required upon a defendant entering a pre-trial diversion program. Now, however, anyone convicted of a DUI - and even those attempting to avoid a conviction by entering into a pre-trial diversion program - will be required to have an ignition interlock devise installed on their vehicle for at least six months. Once a person enters the approved pre-trial diversion program, the court shall order installation of the ignition interlock devise. The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) shall then issue an Ignition Interlock Restricted Driver License (IIRDL). At that point, the period of time the defendant's driver license was to be suspended shall be stayed. Pros of the new law are that it can enable persons to return to legally driving much sooner instead of having to wait out the driver license suspension period. Cons of the new law are the increase in costs that will be associated with the ignition interlock.

“A DUI is not the end of the world as you know it. While it is a serious traffic offense, there are several steps that can be taken to mitigate the damage and minimize any possible adverse effects it may have. However, the most important thing to remember is this - act fast, as time is not on your side.”

While the possibility exists for you to be able to continue driving after receiving a DUI, the most important thing to do is to contact an experienced DUI attorney as soon as you can after you receive the DUI charge. The DUI statute is constantly being changed and updated by the Alabama Legislature, and there are hard and fast deadlines that must be met in order to protect one of our most coveted freedoms we have in our ever increasing mobile society - our freedom to drive!

Ignition Interlock - Freedom at a Price

With the mandatory ignition interlock requirements set to take effect July 1, 2018, installation companies are springing up all across the state. As a DUI defense attorney and Municipal Court Judge, I regularly attend training to receive the most current procedures and information regarding ignition interlock, costs and the installation company closest to you. If you have been charged with a DUI, contact me today so we can get you back on the road to freedom.

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