What You Should Know About the S36 Ignition Interlock Bill in South Carolina

February 22, 2024

Recently, Governor Henry McMaster signed a new bill into law that will go into effect on May 19, 2024, that strengthens current DUI laws and restrictions on convictions and pre-convictions. The state has been under increasing pressure to tighten DUI laws. This new bill will require all people who are convicted of DUI and DUAC, even for their first offense, to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in their vehicle. It will also make IIDs mandatory for anyone who has an implied consent suspension that is not overturned at an administrative hearing.

What is an Ignition Interlock Device and How is it Used for DUI Arrests

Ignition interlocking devices were created to prevent drunk driving by utilizing breathalyzer technology. If you have one of these devices installed in your vehicle, you must blow into the breathalyzer mouthpiece in order to drive. The ignition interlocking device (IID) will measure your breath alcohol content and will only start the engine if it falls below .02.

Before the passing of S36, the IID Program only required devices under certain circumstances. For example, the charge must be either:

  • A DUI first offense with a BAC of .15 or higher
  • A DUI second offense

However, the new bill has created further restrictions on drivers accused/convicted of driving under the influence.

How Does the New Ignition Interlock Bill Change Current DUI Laws?

On May 19th, Gov. McMaster signed S36, the ignition interlock bill. The highway patrol reports between 6,000 and 8,000 DUI arrests a year. In addition, alcohol is a contributing factor in nearly 33% of motor vehicle accident fatalities state-wide. The bill aims to prevent drunk driving accidents by broadening the DUI consequences requiring an ignition interlock device.

The new changes include:

  • An IID is now required for at least 6 months on a DUI first with a BAC of .08
  • A temporary IID can be imposed for pre-conditions for DUI

A pre-conviction refers to an Administrative License Suspension. If you are arrested for a DUI, you may be required to have an ignition interlock device temporarily imposed on your vehicle before your trial.

Alcohol-related offenses can come with a wide range of consequences, both before and after trial. An experienced DUI defense lawyer in Rock Hill, South Carolina, can evaluate the details of your case and help you navigate the complexities of DUI laws.

Who Pays for the Ignition Interlock Device?

You are required to pay for your own ignition interlock device. South Carolina offers an IID Fund for qualifying persons. Without assistance, installing an IID may cost between $70 and $150, depending on the provider. The South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services has a list of approved IID manufacturers.

In addition to the device and installation costs, there are monthly fees and insurance on the device. Monthly fees are typically around $3 per day. Device insurance is often offered around $10 per month.

Speak to a DUI Defense Attorney at Barboza Law Today

At Barboza Law, our exceptional legal team has garnered a reputation for compassionate representation and a strong defense. We understand that facing a DUI charge can be one of the most stressful time periods in your life.

A DUI can cost you your freedom, job, personal reputation, and more. In addition, South Carolina DUI laws are complex and difficult to navigate without proper legal experience. Attorney Barboza has helped numerous people in and around Rock Hill protect their rights. Depending on the circumstances of your case, there are various defense strategies that may apply. Schedule a consultation with a skilled DUI defense lawyer at Barboza Law today by calling (803) 973-6003.