Ignition Interlock Laws In The United State Of America

According to a 2018 report from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), it is said that Ignition Interlock Devices reduce repeat offenses by 67% while also decreasing drunk driving-related deaths by 15 percent.

All the states in the United States of America have ignition interlock laws of which are of varying degrees. Though it is said that all states have ignition interlock laws, not all follow suit or warrant the same degree of offenses.

What is an Ignition interlock device?

An ignition interlock is a breathalyzer installed in a vehicle that prevents a driver from starting their car whenever they are drunk.

Ignition interlock devices are wired into your vehicle’s ignition. Whenever you want to start your car, you will need to blow into the tube of the ignition interlock device. The device will then analyze the alcohol concentration on your breathing.

Ignition Interlock Laws in the United States

As said above, all states in the United States have an ignition interlock law in existence. However, these laws vary greatly from state to state.

Some states will require only certain drivers who have been convicted of a second or repeated drunk driving offense to install an ignition interlock device. Others will require even those with a first-time conviction on alcohol-related driving offense to install an ignition interlock device, this largely depends on the level of alcohol they tested for at the time of their arrest. While the rest of the states has an all-offenders to install an ignition interlock device be or first time offender or repeated offender.

Recent statistics show that 48 states have a mandatory law on IID installation for at least some type of alcohol driving-related offenses which will enable offenders to maintain lawful driving privileges.

Out of the 48 States, 27 states have mandated ignition interlock device installation for all offenders regardless be it a first timer or repeated offenders. Seven states have mandated an IID installation for repeated offenders.

While the last group of 21 has specifically made it mandatory for some groups of offenders such as those with repeated offending, offenders with a blood alcohol content beyond the required standard, and aggravated offenders.

Below are the twenty-eight States that have mandatory laws for IID Installation for all offenses.

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia—and the District of Columbia.

To find out if your state falls into any other category, you can check with your Department of Monitoring Vehicle or with your DUI Lawyer.


Many states have had problems with Ignition Interlock policy issues in the past such as for whom to make the law mandatory and whether or not to suspend the driver’s license during the period of ensuring he carried out the requirements required of him. Understanding how state interlock differs will ensure full compliance on the part of offenders in carrying out the requirements.