BAIID Program Can Help DUI Offenders

BAIID, DUI, Illinois DUI lawyerDid you know that if you are charged with driving under the influence (DUI), your driving privileges will be suspended, regardless of the outcome of the case? For a first-time offender, your license is automatically suspended for six months if you fail a blood-alcohol content (BAC) test, and 12 months if you refuse such a test. In addition, the Illinois Office of the Secretary of State can revoke your license until the conclusion of your case and beyond, depending on the final disposition. During your suspension, however, there may be measures of relief available to you that allow you to continue legally driving to work or school, and to provide for your family.

The most commonly used avenue of relief in Illinois is the Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) Program. To qualify for the BAIID program, an offender is required to file an application with the Office of the Secretary of State to obtain a Monitoring Device Driving Permit, or MDDP. This permit allows a first-time DUI offender the opportunity to retain driving privileges during the statutory suspension of his or her license. Participation in the program is not mandatory, but declining the MDDP completely prohibits an offender from driving for the duration of his or her suspension.

With an MDDP, an offender may drive his or her vehicle after installation of a BAAID. Installation of such a device is handled through the Office of the Secretary of State and its use will be monitored by the office as well. The offender is responsible for all costs associated with the installation and operation of the device. Any offender found driving another vehicle without a BAIID is subject to criminal prosecution.

The Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device is designed to measure the alcohol content of a driver’s breath, and relate that measurement to a corresponding BAC. The BAIID will prevent operation of the vehicle for any measurement over 0.025 percent, and repeated measurements above that level result in a 24-hour lockout. A measurement of 0.05 percent constitutes a violation. The Secretary of State’s office will download recorded information from the device every 60 days and will request an explanation for any detected violation. Insufficient explanations or failure to respond will result in the extension the suspension, and may lead to the vehicle being impounded.

A measure is currently making its way through the state legislature that would expand the use of BAIIDs. The expansion would require the device to be installed on all vehicles driven by an offender, including rental cars, and a BAIID indicator to be applied to the back of the driver’s license of an affected driver.

If you are facing charges for DUI and would like to know more about the BAIID Program in Illinois, contact an experienced Chicago criminal defense attorney. Our knowledgeable team will work with you to help you understand your options and how to proceed with your case. Call our office today for a free consultation.

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