Are Interlock devices for your car mandatory in California if I get a DUI?

Question: Are Interlock devices for your car mandatory in California if I get a DUI?

Answer: The Interlock Device (Hereafter referred to as IID) laws continue to change.  At the time this question was initially asked, they were only mandatory on DUI convictions in 4 counties in California, including Los Angeles.  I have since come back to this question in the year 2020 to adjust it as the law changed again in 2019.

Now the IID laws are consistent throughout CA.  If you are convicted of a 1st offense non injury alcohol DUI (ie. VC 23152(a) or VC 23152(b), you will have the option of getting interlock restricted license for 6 months, or a work/alcohol program restricted license for 12 months.  The good news is you would be eligible for a restricted license immediately upon satisfying certain obligations (ie. enrolled in a 3 month or longer alcohol program, get the IID installed, SR22 Insurance, and pay the processing fee to the DMV).

Alternatively, if you do not own or have access to a car, you can “exempt out” of the IID requirement through the DMV, but you would not be able to drive for the length of the suspension.

If you have a repeat offense DUI conviction, or a DUI with injury conviction (ie. VC 23153) the length of the IID requirement is longer.

Call me to discuss your situation further.  Often times I am able to get my clients DUI charges dismissed and avoid an otherwise IID requirement based on a DUI conviction as stated above.    In the event there is a DUI conviction I can walk you through driver license options and requirements in more detail to help mitigate the loss of the driver license.  My office number is 818-336-1384.


Phil Hache
DUI and Criminal Defense Attorney

Handling cases in the following courts: Van Nuys, San Fernando, Burbank, Glendale, Pasadena, Bellflower, Metro, Airport, Inglewood, Compton, Malibu, Santa Clarita, Beverly Hills, all of Los Angeles County, Riverside County, Orange County, San Bernardino County and Ventura County.

Main Office located in Sherman Oaks, between Encino and Studio City