Early Removal of Ignition Interlock in Colorado

Clients and potential clients frequently asked about early removal of ignition interlock. Under Colorado law, only first time offenders with a BAC ≤ 0.149 qualify for early removal of ignition interlock. All refusal and multiple offense revocations, and drivers revoked for having a BAC ≥ 0.150 are required to have ignition interlock for a mandatory minimum period of two years with no ability to remove the device early.

First-time offenders that happen on or after January 1, 2023 with a low BAC (≤ 0.149) must have the interlock in their vehicle for nine (9) months from the date their driving privilege is reinstated. The DMV will allow a driver to remove the interlock device from their vehicle early if they show full compliance with the device for four (4) consecutive months of no less than 120 full calendar days. Full compliance means no allegations of tampering, circumvention, or lockouts due to an excess BAC (≥0.025).

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Credit for interlock is from the date the license was reinstated, not the date interlock was installed. Your license will show an “issued date” which is either the same date or after the reinstatement date. If you want the exact date your license was reinstated, you will need to call the DMV at 303-205-5613 and obtain this date from an agent over the phone or you need to obtain an updated copy of your motor vehicle record which will list the reinstatement date.

  • The reporting periods for early removal of interlock are calculated differently than normal reporting periods. The requirement is that four (4) consecutive monthly reporting periods of at least 120 days must be violation and tamper free to qualify for early removal. As we have discussed, only first time offenders who have NOT been designated as a Persistent Drunk Driver qualify for early removal.
  • The total time must be 120 full days or more to qualify for early removal so it is important to watch the dates and ensure that you get a download done after the 120th day. If you are a day or even a half day short, you will be denied early removal until the DMV has 120 full days of downloads from the interlock provider.

Please note that this is not an automatic process. You need to verify your reinstatement date with the DMV and then schedule a download for day 121 or later from the date your license was reinstated. Upon completing the download and service with the interlock provider, you need to call your interlock provider and confirm that you have met the four (4) month requirement and request that a “4PASS” letter be generated and electronically sent to the Colorado DMV.

Once the DMV receives the “4PASS” letter or the complete downloads from your interlock device showing four (4) full reporting periods of not less than a 120 consecutive days with no evidence of circumvention, tampering or positive alcohol readings ≥ .025, the DMV will mail you a letter notifying you that you have met the interlock requirements and that you now qualify to apply for and obtain an unrestricted license. This letter often takes several weeks to arrive after you have qualified for early removal. It is our advice that you call the DMV a few days after receiving confirmation from the interlock provider that the final download has been sent to the DMV along with the “4PASS” letter to confirm receipt and to confirm that the DMV has processed your early removal eligibility. Once the DMV confirms this is in the system, you may then go to a driver’s license officer to apply for an unrestricted license.

DO NOT remove the interlock device until you have successfully reinstated to an unrestricted driver’s license.