California DUI law requires an ignition interlock for most convictions, even some first-time drunk driving offenses. Interlocks are vital in reducing the number of repeat California DUIs, so there are strict penalties for any ignition interlock violations that may occur. Those penalties not only apply to any DUI offender but any other person who is caught helping a DUI offender attempt to circumvent, tamper with or fake out their interlock requirement.
Ignition interlock violations in California include:
- Driving or operating a vehicle that is not equipped with an approved ignition interlock device.
- Removing, tampering with, or bypassing an ignition interlock device.
- Failing to disclose an ignition interlock requirement to any person who rents, leases or loans a vehicle to the DUI offender.
- Asking another person to provide a breath sample or to start the vehicle equipped with an ignition interlock device.
It is not just California DUI offenders who can get in trouble for ignition interlock violations. A person without a drunk driving conviction or an interlock requirement can be held accountable for:
- Renting, leasing or loaning a vehicle that is not equipped with an interlock to a person with an interlock restricted license.
- Intentionally blowing into the device (submitting a breath sample) for a convicted DUI offender with a California ignition interlock requirement.
When an ignition interlock device is ordered as part of a DUI conviction, the failure to follow the court directive will result in harsher consequences, including court fines up to $5,000, a one-year license suspension, and/or up to six months in jail. For anyone helping an offender circumvent the interlock requirement, the consequences are the same as if they had the drunk driving conviction and requirement on their own license.