If you are a first time DUI offender, you may qualify for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP). The MDDP allows a qualified driver a great deal of leeway in getting around, but you must be prepared to follow the rules and pay the costs.

To qualify for an MDDP, you must not have had a previous conviction or supervision for DUI within the last five years. You must be at least 18 years old and have an otherwise valid driver’s license. Your DUI must not have resulted in death or great bodily harm and you cannot be previously convicted of reckless homicide or aggravated DUI involving death.

The MDDP works with the installation of a Breath Activated Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID). Once the Judge approves an MDDP, you must pay to have a BAIID installed on your car. These costs include a lump sum payment to the Secretary of State for administration, fees for installation from a private company at an average cost of $150 and average monthly charges of $115.

The BAIID operates like a portable breathalyzer machine. You must blow into one before starting your car. The BAIID analyzes your alcohol level and will not let you start the car unless you register below .025. (The legal limit in Illinois is .08) The BAIID records this activity.

The BAIID also requires that you perform a retest at random intervals. If you fail the retest while driving, your car will begin honking repeatedly to alert law enforcement. The car also honks if you tamper with the BAIID.

Other rules include taking your BAIID-car for retesting within 5 days upon notice and at least every 30 days, or you will be permanently locked out. You must keep a journal of problems with using the BAIID including any failures to pass a test or retest.

Before the MDDP, first time DUI offenders could request a Judicial Driving Permit (JDP) in order to drive to work. The JDP outlined specific routes and times when you could drive. The MDDP allows a driver to use the car at any time and drive anywhere once the BAIID is installed.

Once you are charged with driving while under the influence, the Secretary of State automatically suspends your driver’s license for a certain period. If you take the breathalyzer, your license is suspended for 6 months. If you refuse the breathalyzer, the suspension lasts for 12 months. But before you blow, consider that the state must prove you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Without the breathalyzer result, the state may have a tougher time showing you were actually too drunk to drive. Furthermore, an experienced attorney may be able to fight the Secretary of State suspension altogether.

If you have any question about Monitoring Device Driving Permits, feel free to contact Matt Keenan at or call 847-568-0160.

About mdkeenan

A criminal and school law attorney with over 17 years of experience, I have successfully represented clients all over the Chicago area. My practice includes DUI, felony, criminal, misdemeanor, homicide, internet crime, retail theft, traffic offenses, cyberstalking, drug crimes, weapons violations, domestic battery and juvenile crime. I also represent families involving school cases. My clients come from all over the Chicago area including Skokie, Wilmette, Niles, Northbrook, Glenview, Evanston, Winnetka, Highland park, Northfield, Park Ridge, Des Plaines and Mount Prospect. I am a member of the ACLU and the Illinois State Bar Association. I serve as a volunteer for First Defense Legal Aid. Se habla espanol.
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