Ignition Interlock Laws in South Carolina

South Carolina State SealWhen you are arrested for a DUI in South Carolina your license can be suspended in two different ways:

  1. Administrative. This only happens if you fail a breath test, or refuse to take one. Your license will be suspended or revoked immediately.
  2. Judicial. This occurs when you are sentenced by a court after a trial or plea agreement

When you are arrested for DUI the officer on the scene will issue you a temporary license which allows you to drive for 10 days in order to get your affairs in order. You can challenge your case during this time. If you do not, or if your challenge is unsuccessful, your license will be suspended on the 11th day for 6 months. After your suspension you will receive a restricted license which will allow you to drive to certain approved locations

  • Ignition interlock devices are mandatory for all drivers convicted of DUI offenses
  • You may also be able to install an ignition interlock device in lieu of administrative suspension
  • An alcohol and drug safety action program is mandatory after a DUI conviction
SituationJailFineSuspension
1st Offense48 hours - 90 daysUp to $10006 months
2nd Offense72 hours - 3 yearsUp to $65001 year
3rd Offense60 days - 3 yearsUp to $10,0002 yeras
4th Offense1 to 7 yearsUp to $25,000Permanent revocation
  • The severity of your judicial sentence depends on your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at the time of arrest. South Carolina uses three BAC measurements: It is against the law to drive with a BAC level over 08%. Penalties are more severe if your BAC level is between .10% and .16%. The strictest penalties are reserved for drivers arrested with a BAC level of .16% or more
  • A fourth DUI offense is a felony in South Carolina

➨ Steps to Regaining Your License in South Carolina

Additional Resources

South Carolina Ignition Interlock Device Program
South Carolina Ignition Interlock Device Program Frequently Asked Questions
South Carolina Ignition Interlock Device Program Program Procedures

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