The average cost of a DUI in the US used to be $10,000, but each year, that number increases due to several factors, like fines, court costs, car insurance and lost wages. If you also have a Maryland ignition interlock requirement, that’s just one more cost to bear. Economically speaking, the cost of an ignition interlock isn’t extraordinary, but those costs can undermine a family’s financial security in some cases. Maryland understands that problem and offers ignition interlock financial assistance.
If you cannot afford your Maryland ignition interlock device, here’s what you need to do:
- Contact your Maryland ignition interlock service provider for an evaluation.
- Provide proof of your financial hardship.
- If eligible for financial assistance, you may request a hearing before the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH). That hearing will determine whether you can pay a reduced rate for your interlock.
If you are not found eligible for financial assistance, you must immediately have the ignition interlock installed per the court order. That includes all vehicles you own or co-own with another person.
Maryland expanded its ignition interlock program last October, allowing all DUI offenders access to the devices. Studies show that interlocks reduce drunk driving fatalities by seven percent, plus the devices allow an offender the freedom to maintain employment and get back and forth to necessary appointments.
The rising cost of a DUI is not the best reason to avoid drunk driving, but money can be a game-changer when it comes time to make that decision to drive home. Remind yourself and your friends that instead of $10,000, you can spend $10 on a ride home to keep you out of danger and safe lives on the road. That small investment in safety will keep you out of trouble and help you maintain your independence without a worry about the additional costs of a DUI or ignition interlock.