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Ignition Interlock Devices, Melanie's Law

IGNITION INTERLOCK DEVICES

Melanie's Law requires that an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) be used both by drivers with a hardship license and by drivers whose licenses are eligible for reinstatement.

An IID is a handheld breath-alcohol monitoring device (approximately the size of a cellphone) that is electronically connected to a vehicle’s ignition. Before starting your vehicle, the IID requires you to take and pass a breath test. It also requires you to take re-tests while you are operating the vehicle.

There are four possible scenarios in which you need to use an IID:

  1. If you have 2 or more OUI convictions (for alcohol or controlled substances) and are eligible for a hardship license, you must use the IID for the length of the hardship license. You must also use the IID for an additional 2 years after your license is reinstated.
  2. If you have 2 or more OUI convictions (for alcohol or controlled substances) and are eligible for license reinstatement, you must use the IID for 2 years after your license is reinstated. This 2-year period is in addition to any time you may have used the IID with a hardship license.
  3. If a court orders you to use the IID for any reason, you must use the IID for the length of the court order.
  4. If a court reinstates your license after a suspension of five years or more for a Chemical Test Refusal (pursuant to M.G..L. c.90 s24(1)(f)(1) or s24N), the RMV will reinstate your license (as long as there is no other reason for your license to be suspended). In this case, an IID must be installed for no less than two years.

The IID must be used in every registered vehicle that you own, lease, or operate (including your employer’s vehicle). A restriction will be added to your license making it illegal to operate a vehicle that is not equipped with an IID.

Important: If you do not have the IID installed in your vehicle(s), you will not be eligible for a hardship license and you will not be allowed to have your license reinstated.

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