Christopher D. Roach
DUI- Interlock Device as a Way to Drive While License Suspended
If you are being charged with a DUI, or have been convicted of a DUI, the most difficult penalty to deal with is the driver's license suspension. A first time DUI in Kentucky will more than likely land you with a 120 day license suspension. DUI's are costly and stressful enough in the first place without having to worry about how you will get to work, or how you will get to a medical appointment, or pick up groceries. Under most circumstances, the suspension that is ordered will have a hardship period. That will allow you to drive (after a number of days, weeks, or months after the suspension began) at a fixed schedule to and from work or to a few other tasks.
But hardship licenses have a number of practical drawbacks. The first is that most people are embarrased by having a DUI on their record and the application for hardship license requires the client to get the signature of a manager to sign the form. Not only is it embarassing, but it requires you to notify your employer of the DUI conviction. As an at-will employment state, this notification could result in termination.
It also requires that the client work at a fixed schedule. The hardship license is valid for the rest of the suspension, often two or three months. If the your schedule changes in that period of time, you will have to submit a new application each time it changes. The legal process is slow, and it might be days or weeks before a judge is able to enter a new hardship license order. This can mean days or weeks where you are unable to drive yourself to work.
Finally, the hardship license is not made for urgent situations, like unscheduled medical appointments. If the appointments are not made at the time that the hardship application is submitted, you will have to submit a new application including a sworn statement from your physician. This is not practical in most situations.
There is an alternative to a hardship license that will drastically reduce the length of time that you will be prevented from legally driving. An interlock ignition device is a breathalyzer that is attached to the ignition system of your vehicle and monitored by a third party. Within a few business days, you can have an interlock device ordered and installed on your vehicle, allowing you to drive anywhere that you need to. You won't need to worry about notifying your employer to get the device installed, you can deal with a non-fixed work schedule, and no need to file an application or get a doctor to sign a note for any appointments that come up.
We can help you get an interlock ignition device installed on your vehicle, both pretrial and after conviction. It's stressful enough to be charged with a DUI without worrying how to get to work or get groceries. We can help you keep working during your suspension. Call us today for a free consultation. (859) 291-5555