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SB 1046: California’s Ignition Interlock Law

SB 1046: Interlock Law

The new law regarding DUI arrest goes into effect on January 1, 2019. The new law changes the way DUI cases are handled, additional penalties that attach to DUI offenses, and how the DMV can affect your license. I will explain in more detail below the changes.

You can read the full text for SB 1046 New Window Bill Text –here.

What happens if I am arrested for a DUI starting January 1, 2019?

Generally, upon an arrest for a DUI, a person has their license taken from them, and they are given a pink, temporary license that is valid for 30 days. The officer also informs you that you have 10 days to schedule a DMV Hearing, or your license will be automatically suspended after the 30 days. If your hearing is unsuccessful, you will deal with a License Suspension from the DMV.

This suspension will mean, that if it is your first offense, you must have a 30-day “hard” suspension, where you cannot drive your vehicle during that time. Once the 30-day suspension ends, you can apply for a restricted license, to drive to and from work and an alcohol program.

Under SB 1046, you are now given different options in a standard DUI, where no person is injured:

Option 1: You can install an Ignition Interlock Device right after your arrest to eliminate the 30-day hard suspension and maintain unlimited driving privileges. The Interlock Device must remain installed for six (6) months. You must also get SR-22 insurance and enroll in the AB-541 alcohol program. As soon as you install an Ignition Interlock Device, get an SR-22, and enroll in a DUI program there are no restrictions on your driving privileges.


Option 2: You must serve a 30-day hard suspension and accept a 12-month restricted license to and from the work and alcohol program. You must also get SR-22 insurance and enroll in the AB-541 alcohol program. Thus, the restricted period will change from the standard 6 month period to one year, before you are able to obtain your full license back.

What is the difference if I caused an injury during my DUI arrest?

Upon a conviction for a DUI with injury, there is a 6-month mandatory Ignition Interlock Device requirement.

What if this isn’t my first DUI offense?

  1. If this is your second DUI: 1-year mandatory Ignition Interlock Device requirement.
  2. If this is your third DUI: 2-year mandatory Ignition Interlock Device requirement.
  3. If this is your fourth DUI: 3-year mandatory Ignition Interlock Device requirement.

What if I received my DUI before January 1, 2019?

SB 1046 only applies to DUI arrests ON OR AFTER January 1, 2019. It is NOT retroactive to 2018 DUI arrests or cases. This means that if you received your DUI arrest before this date, none of this section applies to you.

What does this mean for me?

Senate Bill 1046 (SB-1046) has ushered in significant changes for those facing DUI charges in California, particularly affecting the mandatory 30-day hard suspension previously in place. This legislation allows for more immediate options to maintain driving privileges, significantly impacting how individuals can handle the aftermath of a DUI charge.

The primary benefit of SB-1046 is the opportunity to install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) right after a DUI incident. This early installation can significantly mitigate the duration you are without driving privileges post-conviction, potentially allowing you to maintain uninterrupted access to driving, which is crucial for many people’s daily responsibilities and livelihood.

However, it’s essential to consider the financial implications of this path. While the program aims to reduce the burden of DUI consequences on driving privileges, the cost of IID installation and maintenance can be substantial. Although new program provisions might offer a sliding-scale payment option to accommodate varying income levels, the expenses associated with the device are an important consideration.

Navigating these changes and understanding how they specifically affect your DUI case requires expert legal guidance. As an experienced attorney, I am here to help you understand SB-1046, explore your options, and make informed decisions about your case. From discussing the financial aspects of IID installation to strategizing the best approach for your situation, I am committed to providing comprehensive support.

If you’re dealing with the implications of a DUI charge and need to understand how SB-1046 affects your case, or if you’re exploring your options to maintain driving privileges, I encourage you to reach out. Give me a call at 909-939-7126 for a consultation and expert legal guidance tailored to your unique circumstances. Together, we can navigate the complexities of this new legislation and work towards the most favorable outcome for your situation.

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