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In Massachusetts if your license is suspended for two or more operating under the influence convictions, you will not be able to reinstate your license without first having an Ignition Interlock Device installed in a vehicle. In fact, any car that you own, lease or operate will be required to be fitted with an interlock device. If your license has been suspended as an Immediate Threat there are certain situations in which the Registry or the Division of Insurance Board of Appeals will not allow you to reinstate until you install an interlock device. The interlock requirement following an immediate threat suspension can be imposed even if you were found not guilty of any criminal charges.
For individuals who are suspended for operating under the influence you will be required underG.L. c. 90 § 24 1/2 to have the device for a minimum of 2 years. If you were granted a hardship license on an OUI suspension you will need the device for the balance of suspension period plus an additional two years after being eligible for a full time license.
For example: on a third offense OUI your license is suspended for eight years. After two years of the suspension you apply for and are granted a hardship license. You will be required to have an interlock device from the time the hardship is granted until the date the eight year suspension would have concluded. On the date the eight year suspension would have concluded you will be eligible for a fulltime license and can have the hours (H) restriction removed from your license. However, you will need the device for two more years. In this situation the individual will have to pay for and maintain interlock devices in every vehicle they lease, own or operate for a minimum of eight years. If you decided to just serve the entire eight year license suspension and were not granted a hardship license, you will need an interlock device for just two years.
If you are eligible to reinstate your license or were granted a hardship license and need an interlock device, the process of getting your license reinstated is cumbersome. These are the steps everyone who is interlock required must follow:
1. You must meet with a Registry of Motor Vehicles Hearing Officer. The Hearing Officer will review your record and process any paperwork to ensure you are approved to get the device installed. Without first receiving Registry approval the interlock vendor will not be able to install the device. The Hearing Officer will review documents you need to fill out and sign in front of a notary public. Do not sign the affidavits without being in front of a notary as they will not be accepted by the Registry. Not only do the operators need to complete affidavits but any licensed person living in the same residence of the operator will be required to complete an affidavit.
2. After all the affidavits are completed and notarized you will need to personally submit the completed forms to a Hearing Officer.
3. If the forms are accepted, the Hearing Officer will release a hold on your license. This will allow your selected interlock vendor to install the device in every car you lease, own or operate.
4. After the device has been installed you will need to return to the Hearing Officer who will again review your file. Assuming everything is in order, you will be instructed to pay your reinstatement fee. Once the reinstatement fee is paid you will be eligible to operate. However, if your license was suspended for two or more years, you must first take and pass the Massachusetts permit test and schedule a road test.
Individuals who are required to have an interlock device must have monthly downloads completed, pay monthly costs and comply with Registry rules, guidelines and regulations. Failure to comply with rules, regulations and guidelines can lead to a license suspension of ten years to life.