If you are charged with driving under the influence (DUI) here in Florida, the only way you may be able to drive legally for some time is if you have an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in your vehicle(s). As you likely know, this is a Breathalyzer-type tool that requires you to take a breath test for the ignition to start and “rolling tests” intermittently as you’re driving.
The length of time you’re required to have an IID will depend on factors such as whether you’ve had any previous DUIs and your blood alcohol content (BAC) when you were arrested. While you’re required to use an IID, you’ll have a “P” restriction on your driver’s license.
What if you rely on an employer-owned vehicle to do your job?
Floridians with a restricted license that requires an IID can drive a vehicle owned by their employer that doesn’t have the device installed on it as long as they:
- Do not own their own vehicle
- Have their employer’s written permission to do so
To obtain permission from Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FHSMV), employers must complete and sign a form stating that they’re aware of their employee’s specific conviction, including whether it was a first, second or third offense and for how long the IID is required. The authorization only grants permission for the employee to drive a company-owned vehicle while they’re doing their job. It can’t be used for other purposes.
While some employers may trust an employee enough to authorize the use of one of their vehicles without an IID, many others may not. That could mean the loss of your job.
Job loss is just one of many effects that a DUI (even a first offense) can have on your life and your finances, potentially for years. That’s why it’s always wise to take time and learn about your rights after a DUI arrest to make sure that you’ve explored all potential avenues for fighting the change or mitigating the consequences.