A new law—Senate Bill 259—concerning DUI offenses in Nevada will take effect by October 1, 2018. Praised by many, including Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the most defining change of SB259 on current DUI laws is the introduction of ignition interlocks for all first-time offenders. With only a few months left before the new law comes into effect, here’s what you need to know about Nevada’s new DUI law:
1. The new law requires ignition interlocks for at least six months for all first-time offenders with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 or greater.
This new requirement is a sharp increase from current Nevada law, which only requires ignition interlocks for first-time offenders when their BAC is 0.18 or higher.
2. Judges will no longer have the discretion to require ignition interlocks for 3 months for first-time offenders with a BAC of 0.17 or less.
Under current law, judges have the discretion to require ignition interlocks for a period of 3-6 months for first-time offenders with a BAC of 0.08-0.17. The new law will require judges to order offenders with a BAC of 0.08 and greater to use an ignition interlock for at least six months.
3. The law removes an exception to ordering ignition interlocks in order to avoid undue hardship to the person.
A judge no longer has the ability to make an exception to the requirement of an ignition interlock if doing so would subject the offender to “undue hardship.” Now, the only caveat to the ignition interlock installation requirement is if a judge finds that ordering the installation would not “serve the interests of justice.”
4. DUI suspects may have the option of using an ignition interlock instead of having their license revoked.
Under current Nevada law, if you fail to submit to a DUI chemical test or drive with a BAC of 0.08 or higher, your license will be administratively suspended. The new law allows first time DUI offenders to opt for the installation of an ignition interlock in their vehicle, allowing them to get to work and fulfill family obligations.
5. Nevada is the 30th state to require ignition interlocks for all first-time offenders.
In what appears to be a growing trend, the passage of SB259 makes Nevada the 30th state to require the installation of ignition interlocks for all first-time offenders. The CDC estimates that these devices significantly aid in preventing DUI offenses. If you are faced with a DUI charge, contact us today to fight for your rights in administrative license suspension hearings and provide you with an experienced DUI defense.